Blood flow velocity in the uterine and ovarian arteries during the normal menstrual cycle

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Twelve healthy women with regular menstrual cycles were examined with a combination of two-dimensional real-time ultrasound and color and spectral Doppler techniques on cycle days 4 and 8 and daily from cycle day 12 until follicular rupture, then days + 1, +2, +5, +7 and +12 after follicular rupture. The uterine and subendometrial arteries, arteries in the ovarian stroma and hilum, in the wall of the largest follicle of each ovary, and in the wall of the corpus luteum were examined. The pulsatility index and the time-averaged maximum velocity were calculated. In the uterine arteries the pulsatility index was highest on day + 2, after which it decreased successively to its lowest value, whereas the time-averaged maximum velocity reached its highest value on day + 12. Similar changes were observed in the subendometrial arteries. In the non-dominant ovary, neither the pulsatility index nor the time-averaged maximum velocity manifested any consistent changes during the cycle. In the dominant ovary, the time-averaged maximum velocity increased and the pulsatility index decreased after follicular rupture, being significantly higher and lower, respectively, in the luteal than in the follicular phase. These changes were seen in the ovarian hilum, stroma and follicular wall, but were most obvious in the wall of the dominant follicle and of the corpus luteum. We conclude that the blood circulation in the uterus and in the dominant ovary changes considerably during the menstrual cycle, whereas that in the non-dominant ovary shows no unequivocal changes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-208
JournalUltrasound in Obstetrics & Gynecology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1993

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging

Free keywords

  • Doppler ultrasound
  • blood flow velocity
  • menstrual cycle


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