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Ups J Med Sci. 1988;93(1):91-9.

Nutrition of the intervertebral disc: acute effects of cigarette smoking. An experimental animal study.

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Department of Orthopaedics, University of Göteborg, Sahlgren Hospital, Sweden.


We have in the present experimental study investigated the influence of cigarette smoking on some nutritional parameters of the porcine intervertebral disc. The results from the acute smoking tests show a significant reduction in solute transport. Diffusion of sulphate, oxygen and methyl glucose was reduced by 30-40 per cent. This effect was obtained after exposure to smoke for 20-30 minutes. A smoking period of three hours reduced the transport efficiency to about 50 per cent. The effect of smoking decreased when the exposure ceased. The concentration gradients were close to normal after 2 hours "recovery". These findings suggest that cigarette smoking not only significantly affects the circulatory system outside the intervertebral disc, where the most pronounced effect is the reduction in solute exchange capacity, but also significantly deteriorates the cellular uptake rate and metabolite production within the disc.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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