Effects of Ultrasound and Stretching on Skeletal Muscle Contusion in Rats: Immunohistochemistry Analysis

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Ana Carolina Brandt de Macedo; Julye Leiko Ywazaki; Ana Paula Camargo Martins; Marina Luise Viola de Azevedo; Lucia Noronha & Anna Raquel Silveira Gomes


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of stretching and therapeutic ultrasound (TUS) on desmin and laminin contents of rat muscle after contusion. Male Wistar rats (n = 35, 8–9 weeks of age, 271 ± 14g body weight) were divided into five groups: Control group (CG) (n= 03); Injured group (IG) (n= 8); Injured + ultrasound group (IUSG) (n= 8); Injured+stretching group (ISG) (n= 8); Injured +ultrasound + stretching group (IUSSG) (n= 8). The application of ultrasound started 72 hours after the contusion, using the 50 % pulsed mode, 0.5 W/cm2, 5 min, once a day, for five consecutive days. Passive manual stretching was started on the tenth day after injury, with four repetitions of 30 s each and 30 s rest between repetitions, once a day, five times per week, for a total of ten applications. After 22 days, the rats were euthanazied and the gastrocnemius of both limbs removed for desmin and laminin immunohistochemistry morphometric measurement. Analysis was conducted using ANOVA one way post-hoc Tukey to parametric data and Kruskall-Wallis for non-parametric data. The IUSSG animals showed a larger area of desmin than ISG (p<0.05). It was found a decrease in laminin comparing IUSG to IG. However, laminin area was higher in ISG than all groups (p<0.05). UST isolated or in combination with stretching influenced gastrocnemius regeneration in different manners. While stretching applied isolated enhanced gastrocnemius regeneration noticed by the increase in laminin area, in combination with TUS strengthened the muscle healing rising desmin area.

KEY WORDS: Muscle stretching exercises; Ultrasonic therapy; Desmin; Laminin, rats.

How to cite this article

DE MACEDO, A. C. B.; YWAZAKI, J. L.; MARTINS, A. P. C.; AZEVEDO, M. L. V.; NORONHA, L. & GOMES, A. R. S. Effects of ultrasound and stretching on skeletal muscle contusion in rats: immunohistochemistry analysis. Int. J. Morphol., 38(5):1288-1295, 2020.