The effects of exercise on pulpal and gingival blood flow are undefined. The autonomic nervous system response suggests that they could increase or decrease with exercise, and they may be independent of each other. This study attempts to answer these questions.
Materials and Methods:
15 “physically active” subjects and 15 “physically inactive” subjects exercised on a treadmill. Laser Doppler recordings of pulpal and gingival blood flow were taken before and after exercise.
There was a mean increase of approximately 50% in both pulpal (range -66%-+509%) and gingival (-72%- +1022%) blood flow after exercise, with wide variations, with no significant differences between the two groups of subjects.
Exercise could increase pulpal and/or gingival blood flow as part of the overall increase in cardiac output with exercise, or could decrease pulpal and/or gingival blood flow due to diversion of blood to the somatic muscles during exercise. This study suggests that the former physiological phenomenon usually takes place at both sites,though there were some contradictory results.
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