Wound healing effects of Aloe gel and other topical antibacterial agents on rat skin

John P. Heggers, Ahmet Kucukcelebi, Catherine J. Stabenau, Francis Ko, Lyle D. Broemeling, Martin C. Robson, Wendell D. Winters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


The effects of topical antibacterials were studied in an acute wound healing model. Sprague‐Dawley rats after appropriate anaesthesia received four 1.5 cm2 dorsal defects through the skin and panniculus carnosus. Skin defects were treated for 14 days with 2% mupirocin ointment, 1% clindamycin cream, 1% silver sulfadiazine cream + Aloe vera gel, and silver sulfadiazine combined with Aloe gel. An untreated group served as controls. Each group was comprised of 10 animals each to achieve statistical significance. Wound closure rate was assessed by serial planimetry. Following healing, the breaking strength of each resultant scar was determined. Wound half‐lives and overall healing rates were calculated by regressing the log of the areas of all wounds over time. Overall healing rates of all the treated groups were significantly different compared with control group (p<0.05). The Aloe group had the shortest half‐life and healed faster than the control group. All the other treated groups had no longer half‐lives when compared with the control group. While silver sulfadiazine + Aloe increased the breaking strength of the healed wound, Aloe alone did not, but demonstrated an increase over the control. Topical Aloe significantly enhances the rate of wound healing and when combined with silver sulfadiazine reverses the wound retardant effect observed with silver sulfadiazine. Clindamycin and mupirocin significantly delay wound closure. However mupirocin enhanced the breaking strength of the wound.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)455-457
Number of pages3
JournalPhytotherapy Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • Aloe gel
  • silver sulfadiazine
  • topical antibacterials
  • wound healing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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