Characterization of stages of embrio-fetal, chorionic vesicle and placenta development in the domestic cat (Felis catus) by ultrasonography.

DOI : http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0717-95022015000100029
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Gabriela Illanes; Claudia Espinoza & Patricia Escárate

Summary

Ultrasound is one of the most widely used methods for gestational diagnosis, allowing the detection of early pregnancy and evaluation of fetal growth and development. Ten pregnant cats (aged 10 months to-6 years) were used in this study, with known dates of mating. Serial ultrasound testings were performed on days 15th (stage 1), 18th (stage 2), 21st (stage 3), 38th (stage 4) and 45th (stage 5) of gestation, to measure biometric parameters (Chorionic vesicle: transverse diameter (DTVC), longitudinal diameter (DLVC); Placenta: thickness (GP); Fetus: cephalocaudal length (LCC), thoraco-abdominal diameter (DTA), cephalic diameter (DC). Photographic records were made at each stage. In stage 1, it was impossible to visualize the embryo. In stage 2, the embryo was observed near the wall measuring 4.7 mm on average LCC, and the endocardial tube was functioning. In stage 3, the umbilical cord was observed, but it was difficult to distinguish different organs, with the exception of the heart, which was detected by heartbeat movements. In stage 4, the fetus begins to move. Organs, such as the brain, lungs, heart septation, diaphragm, liver, stomach, bowel, bladder and bone ossification were observed. In the forelimbs, fingers apart with claws and footpads were visualized. In stage 5, in addition to the features observed in the previous stage, the kidneys show the cortex and medulla, and the heart chambers are clearly visualize. A linear correlation analysis among the biometric parameters was performed. Results were statistically significant for most parameters studied (p<0.0001). We characterized the gestational stages studied. Out of the ten cats studied, seven cats had a normal pregnancy. One cat showed one congenitally malformed fetus, and one fetal death occurred in the other two cats.

KEY WORDS: Cat; Felis catus; Ultrasonography; Gestational Development.

How to cite this article

ILLANES, G.; ESPINOZA, C. & ESCÁRATE, P. Characterization of stages of embrio-fetal, chorionic vesicle and placenta development in the domestic cat (Felis catus) by ultrasonography. Int. J. Morphol., 33(1):178-186, 2015.