Blood flow to the maxilla and mandible may vary due to differences in vascular supply and in physiologic, metabolic and pathologic conditions. In general it is accepted that oral tissues have an abundant blood supply; however, there is little information quantifying blood flow to these regions. In this study, the maxillary tissues were chosen to measure the blood flow in attached and reflected gingival tissue in adult cats using the radiolabeled microsphere method.

Sixteen cats with permanent dentition, clean mouths, and without inflamed gingiva upon visual inspection were used and divided into two groups. Group 1 consisted of six cats whose muco-gingival tissues were reflected on either the left (n=3) or the right (n=3) maxillary quadrant; their contralateral gingival tissues were left attached (n=6) and used as controls. Group 2 consisted of ten cats with maxillary muco-gingival flaps reflected on both maxillary left and right quadrants. Immediately prior to flap reflection, the gingival tissue of fifteen quadrants was injected with .6 ml of a solution of sterile saline, 2% plain lidocaine, or 2% lidocaine with 1:50,000 epinephrine. The gingival tissue of five quadrants received no injection of solution and were used as controls.

In both groups, all flaps were reflected for a minimum of 90 minutes before injection of 153Gadolinium microspheres. The left femoral artery was cannulated for the collection of a reference blood sample, placed in the left ventricle, via the right common carotid A catheter was artery, to allow intraventricular injection and proper mixing of the microspheres. Two and a half million microspheres of 53Gadolinium were injected over a 20 second interval. The cats were then euthanized and tissue flaps collected. The sample flaps were placed in a gamma counter and their blood flow was determined based on their radioactivity.

The attached gingival samples in group 1 had the lowest blood flow while those in group 2 injected with 2% plain lidocaine had the highest blood flow. In group 1, there was significant difference between the attached (control) and reflected gingival samples (p=.027). In group 2, there was significant difference between mucogingival tissues injected with 2% plain lidocaine when compared with sterile saline or no treatment (p<.05). However, there was no significant difference (p>.05) in blood flow of gingival tissues injected with 2% plain lidocaine and 2% lidocaine with 1:50,000 epinephrine 117 minutes post injection, nor was there significant difference between the sterile saline and no treatment groups. The finding concludes that the increased blood flow is a function of the vasodilation properties of lidocaine and that the vasoconstrictor, epinephrine, has a restraining effect on increasing blood flow post operatively in reflected muco-gingival tissues.




Graduate School

First Advisor

Mahmoud Torabinejad

Second Advisor

Raymond D. Gilbert

Third Advisor

Douglas J. McKendry

Fourth Advisor

Paul J. McMillan

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Gingiva -- blood supply; Microspheres; Lidocaine; Epinephrine



Page Count

3 v; 47

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


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