We assessed age‐related excisional palatal mucoperiosteal wound closure in rats. A 4.2 mm diameter punch was used to create a secondary healing defect in the palate of Wistar rats. Study group—21, 18‐month‐old vs. control 21, 2‐month‐old males. The 2‐dimensional area, maximum length and width of the soft tissue defect served as clinical outcome parameters. The dynamics of the initial three healing weeks were assessed. Semi‐quantitative histomorphometric analysis of inflammation and myofibroblasts served for the evaluation of the inflammatory and proliferative wound healing phases. Complete wound closure was faster in the old rats. A dimensional related wound closure was observed in the young rats versus a symmetrical wound closure in the old rats. Inflammatory response was significantly delayed and of lower intensity in the old rats. Myofibroblastic response, representing the proliferative stage, was delayed and of lower intensity in the old rats, albeit not statistically significant. Reduced initial tissue damage due to decreased and delayed inflammatory response in the old rats ultimately led to faster clinical wound healing compared to the young rats, despite a statistically non‐significant lower proliferative response in the old rats.
- Wound healing