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Ultrasound features of liver, gallbladder kidneys, urinary bladder and jejunum in young and adult rabbits


This study described characteristics and measurements of the liver, gallbladder, kidney, urinary bladder and jejunum of young and adults New Zealand White (NZW) rabbits. The young rabbits’s group was composed of 39 rabbits of both sexes (20 males and 19 females), weaned at 30-31 days of age, and the evaluations carried out at 35, 56 and 77 days of age. The adults group was composed of 23 females and 15 males, with more than 6 months of age, and one ultrasonographic evaluation per animal. The exam consisted in the evaluation of liver, gallbladder, right and left kidneys, jejunum and urinary bladder. All the animals were weighed before the evaluations. The average weight increased (p<0.05) from 35 days to adults. Both in adult and in young rabbits, the liver presented predominantly isoechogenic in relation of right kidney and with homogeneous texture. The gallbladder had an elongated ovoid shape, ranging for pear-shaped to almond, with anechogenic content, not being visible in 2.6% of young rabbits and 26.3% of adults. The length and width were 1.06 and 0.39; 1.44 and 0.53; 1.41 and 0.58; 1.57 and 0.67cm, respectively at 35, 56, 77 days and adults. For young and adults rabbits, the gallbladder and the left and right kidneys were positively correlated (p<0.05) with weight. The kidneys had an ellipse shape with smooth surface, increasing (p>0.05) from 35 days to adulthood. There was a positive correlation (p<0.05) between the right and left kidney volumes. The description of urinary bladder more frequently (86%) observed was anechogenic content, with small free echogenic structure within the lumen, both in young and in adult rabbits. There was no difference (p>0.05) in the thickness of the layers of the jejunum among ages, with the mean of 0.23cm for all animals. With the results, the first Brazilian ultrasonographic data for liver, gallbladder, kidney, jejunum and urinary bladder were defined to NZW rabbits in 35, 56 and 77days of life, as well as adults.

Ultrasonography; liver; gallbladder; kidneys; urinary bladder; jejunum; abdomen; rabbit; young; adult

Colégio Brasileiro de Patologia Animal - CBPA Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira, Caixa Postal 74.591, 23890-000 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil, Tel./Fax: (55 21) 2682-1081 - Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil