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Theriogenology. 2009 Jun;71(9):1433-9. doi: 10.1016/j.theriogenology.2009.01.020. Epub 2009 Mar 14.

Accuracy of in vivo and ex vivo ultrasonographic evaluation of ovarian follicles and corpora lutea in sows.

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NUTEGA, C. Marconi 9. 28823 Coslada, Madrid, Spain. <>


Current study determined, in sows, the accuracy of ultrasonography for in vivo (n=8) and ex vivo (n=7) evaluation of corpora lutea (CLs) and follicles > or =1.5mm in size, by comparison with macroscopic findings in sliced ovaries. The accuracy for ex vivo detection of follicles increased with follicle size (P<0.05), being low for 1.5-1.9 mm follicles (65.9%) and higher for > or =6mm follicles (93.3%); differences between ultrasonographic and macroscopic observations were significant only for follicles smaller than 3.9 mm (P<0.05), due to underestimation. Ex vivo observation succeeded to detect presence or absence of CLs in all the ovaries; the efficiency for determining the exact number of CLs being 94.4%. The accuracy for in vivo detection of follicles also increased with follicle size (P<0.05), dropping to values lower than 40% for 1.5-1.9 mm follicles; therefore, there were significant differences between ultrasonographic and macroscopic observations (P<0.05). On the other hand, accuracy remained around 92% for > or =6mm follicles. Ultrasonography was useful again for detecting presence of CLs in all the ovaries; the efficiency for determining CLs number reached 86.7%, due to underestimation in ovaries with higher number of CLs (P<0.05). Overall, there were no significant differences when comparing the accuracy of ex vivo and in vivo scannings for determination neither of the number of follicles in each size-category larger than 1.9 mm nor of the presence of ovulations or of the CLs number in each ovary. In conclusion, the use of ultrasonography allows an accurate detection of the presence and number of CLs and follicles > or =2mm of diameter in sows, without significant differences between in vivo and ex vivo observations.

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