An animal study was realized to investigate the possible beneficial effect of EGb 761 as an antioxidant agent on amikacin ototoxicity by measuring distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs). Twenty-eight adult rats were grouped equally as follows. Group amikacin: rats received amikacin 600 mg/kg/day intramuscularly between postnatal days (PND) 30 and PND44. Group amikacin/EGb 761: rats received amikacin 600 mg/kg/day intramuscularly between PND30 and PND44 and EGb 761 100 mg/kg/day orally between PND30 and PND50. Group EGb 761: rats received equivolume saline intramuscularly between PND30 and PND44 and EGb 761 100 mg/kg/day orally between PND30 and PND50. No treatment group: rats received nothing, Group amikacin was found to be affected only on the last measurement day of study (PND57). The frequencies greater than 2002 Hz were significantly reduced compared with the amplitudes of PND30 (P < 0.05). Group amikacin/EGb 761 was most and earliest affected by amikacin-induced ototoxicity. DPOAE amplitudes were found in this group to be decreased at 2-6 kHz starting on PND50. The results of Group EGb 761 and No treatment group were not significantly changed. For the DPOAE input/output amplitude thresholds, Group amikacin (P < 0.05) and Group amikacin/EGb 761 (P < 0.01) had significantly elevated thresholds on PND57, except at 5 kHz for Group amikacin (P = 0,06), According to the results of the study, EGb 761 may be regarded as a facilitating drug for the development of amikacin ototoxicity. The results of the present study may warn against concomitant use of aminoglycosides, specifically amikacin, with EGb 761. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.