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Changes of the Normal Ovary During Menstrual Cycle in Reproductive Age on the Diffusion-Weighted Image

Morisawa, Nobuko MD*; Kido, Aki MD, PhD*; Koyama, Takashi MD, PhD; Okada, Tomohisa MD, PhD*; Kataoka, Masako MD, PhD*; Umeoka, Shigeaki MD, PhD*; Fujimoto, Koji MD, PhD*; Tamai, Ken MD, PhD; Togashi, Kaori MD, PhD*

Journal of Computer Assisted Tomography:
doi: 10.1097/RCT.0b013e318255aebf
Abdominal Imaging

Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate changes in magnetic resonance findings of the normal ovary during menstrual cycle on diffusion-weighted image (DWI).

Methods: Magnetic resonance imaging was performed in 9 healthy females at the menstrual, periovulatory, and luteal phases using a 1.5-T unit. Signal intensity (SI) of the ovary on DWI with a b value of 1000 s/mm2 was visually scored. The ovary-to-muscle contrast ratios on DWI and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values were also evaluated.

Results: All the ovaries were identified, and higher SI than the nerve root was identified in 70% (38/54) of the ovaries, although visual scores did not show significant difference among menstrual phases. The mean ADC values (10−3 mm2/s) were 1.71 (SD, 0.27), 1.71 (SD, 0.22), and 1.67 (SD, 0.19) in menstrual, periovulatory, and luteal phases, respectively. No phase-dependent change was observed in contrast ratios and ADC values.

Conclusion: The normal ovary in fertile period shows high SI enough to be identified on DWI, and observed values are independent of the menstrual cycle.

Author Information

From the *Department of Diagnostic Imaging and Nuclear Medicine, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University, Kyoto; †Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Osaka Red Cross Hospital, Osaka; and ‡Department of Radiology, Kyoto Katsura Hospital, Kyoto, Japan.

Received for publication January 25, 2012; accepted March 14, 2012.

Reprints: Nobuko Morisawa, MD, Department of Diagnostic Imaging and Nuclear Medicine, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University, 54 Kawahara-cho, Shogoin, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606–8507, Japan (e-mail:

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.