The Open Dentistry Journal

ISSN: 1874-2106 ― Volume 14, 2020

The Effect of Exercise on Pulpal and Gingival Blood Flow in Physically Active and Inactive Subjects as Assessed by Laser Doppler

EC Lobo1, SMT Nguyen 1, MA Pogrel2, *
1 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery University of California San Francisco
2 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery


The effects of exercise on pulpal and gingival blood flow are undefined. The autonomic nervous system response suggests that they could increase or decrease with exercise, and they may be independent of each other. This study attempts to answer these questions.

Materials and Methods:

15 “physically active” subjects and 15 “physically inactive” subjects exercised on a treadmill. Laser Doppler recordings of pulpal and gingival blood flow were taken before and after exercise.


There was a mean increase of approximately 50% in both pulpal (range -66%-+509%) and gingival (-72%- +1022%) blood flow after exercise, with wide variations, with no significant differences between the two groups of subjects.


Exercise could increase pulpal and/or gingival blood flow as part of the overall increase in cardiac output with exercise, or could decrease pulpal and/or gingival blood flow due to diversion of blood to the somatic muscles during exercise. This study suggests that the former physiological phenomenon usually takes place at both sites,though there were some contradictory results.

Keywords: Pulp blood flow, Gingival Blood Flow, Laser Doppler.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2012
Volume: 6
First Page: 56
Last Page: 60
Publisher Id: TODENTJ-6-56
DOI: 10.2174/1874210601206010056

Article History:

Received Date: 29/11/2011
Revision Received Date: 19/1/2012
Acceptance Date: 30/1/2012
Electronic publication date: 16/3/2012
Collection year: 2012

© Lobo et al.; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery University of California San Francisco Box 0440, 521 Parnassus Ave., Room C522 San Francisco, CA 94143-0440; Tel: (415) 476-8226; Fax: (415) 476-6305; E-mail:

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