Animal models of type I and type II diabetes mellitus have been studied intensively in an effort to define the pathophysiology of the diabetic condition. An often-observed clinical manifestation of diabetes is poor wound repair. Thus diabetic animals have emerged as useful models for the study of impaired wound healing. The healing of acute tympanic membrane (TM) perforations in diabetic animals has not been reported. This investigation compares time to closure of a standardized TM perforation in rats with streplozotocin-induced diabetes, Zucker diabetic fatty rats, and normal control rats. The Zucker diabetic fatty rats demonstrate a significantly prolonged time to closure compared with the other two groups. This animal model may be useful for future study of TM wound repair.
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