American Journal of Medical Sciences and Medicine. 2014, 2(3), 54-57DOI:
Abstract: The tobacco plant (Nicotiana tabacum) has been used globally for several years as chewing tobacco, kreteck, dry snuff and in pipe. Snuff is a form of tobacco that is processed to fine grains and packaged either in cans or pouches. This study was carried out to investigate the effect of sub-lethal concentrations of orogastrically-administered tobacco on some haematological and haemorrheological parameters of albino Wistar rats. Nineteen young albino Wistar rats with weights between 110-170 g were used for the study. The oral LD50 for the tobacco snuff concentration was determined as 10 mg per 200 g rat body weight. The control group A was given 1 ml of distilled water, while the experimental groups (B, C, D) were administered with tobacco snuff concentrations of 2.24 mg, 4.67 mg, and 6.77 mg per body weight respectively, through an oral route with the aid of orogastric tube for 14 days. Blood samples were collected under chloroform anaesthesia and analysed for haematocrit, haemoglobin concentration, white blood cell (WBC), platelet counts, whole blood viscosity, plasma viscosity and serum viscosity. WBC was significantly increased (p<0.05) in group D (13.43±4.26 x109/l) as compared to the control (10.0±3.12 x109/l). Platelet count was also significantly lower (p<0.05) in all the experimental groups B, C and D (473±160.84 x109/l), (357±66.55 x109/l) and (375.66±33.54 x109/l) respectively as compared to the control (758.25±113.41 x109/l). Whole blood viscosity was also significantly (p<0.05) increased. Smokeless tobacco may possibly affect clotting integrity and alter blood rheology.