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Phytother Res. 2011 Jan;25(1):49-52. doi: 10.1002/ptr.3199.

Bromelain in the early phase of healing in acute crush Achilles tendon injury.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria.


Bromelain, an enzyme extracted from the stem of the pineapple plant has been proposed as a treatment for reducing pain and swelling following acute muscle injuries but studies are yet to be done on its effect on tendon healing. This study therefore investigated the effects of bromelain on tenocyte proliferation and the tendon malondialdehyde (MDA) level in the early stage of healing in a crush injury to the Achilles tendon of Sprague-Dawley rats. Twenty four male rats were divided randomly into three groups; groups 2 and 3 had induced crush injury to the left Achilles tendon. Group 1; nil injury and nil treatment, Group 2; nil treatment, Group 3; oral bromelain treatment. Bromelain was given at a dosage of 7 mg/kg body weight daily over the first 14 days post-injury. On day 15 post injury, the animals were killed and the tendons excised and processed for histological study and MDA assay. The results showed a significant increase in the tenocyte population in the bromelain group; p < 0.05. There was, however, no significant difference in the MDA level.


Based on this study, 600 GDU bromelain given once daily in acute tendon injury at a dosage of 7 mg/kg promoted healing by stimulating tenocyte proliferation.

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