Use of Tubo-Ovarian Ligation Via Colpotomy as A Potential Method for Sterilization in Mares

Pouya Dini, Ana Weiland, Yatta Boakari, Kirsten E. Scoggin, Alejandro Esteller-Vico, Peter Daels, Barry A. Ball

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The goal of this study was to develop a safe, effective, and economical method for permanent sterilization of mares based upon tubo-ovarian ligation performed via colpotomy. In this study, we evaluated the application of a nylon cable tie (zip-tie) to the ovarian pedicle and oviduct of mares to induce ovarian ischemia and tubal ligation without removal of ovaries. Initially, efficiency of zip-ties on the ovarian pedicle was tested in vitro and in vivo. Based on the absence of leakage through the zip-tie ligated vessels in anatomic specimens, we confirmed the potential efficacy of the technique. Next, ligation of the ovarian pedicle via a standing colpotomy was conducted in five mares. Although the surgical procedure in these mares appeared to be quick and efficient, all five mares were noted to develop ovarian adhesions to surrounding abdominal viscera in either one or both ovaries postoperatively. Ovarian ischemia led to loss of ovarian activity based upon ultrasound examination, which was confirmed by a low plasma progesterone concentration in four of the five mares. During the postoperative period, four mares demonstrated clinical signs related to the ovarian adhesions and were euthanized. The postoperative complications associated with ovarian adhesions to abdominal viscera presented significant challenges, limiting the success of this study. While this technique resulted in ovarian ischemia and atrophy in four out of the five mares, we were unable to assess long-term effects on the health and reproduction of the mares due to the ovarian adhesions to the surrounding tissues and the potential for secondary complications. Although technically feasible, tubo-ovarian ligation via colpotomy does not appear to be a viable option for sterilization of mares using the described technique due to ovarian adhesions post procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103683
JournalJournal of Equine Veterinary Science
StatePublished - Sep 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021


  • Tubo-ovarian ligation
  • colpotomy
  • endocrine
  • equine
  • hormone
  • mare
  • ovariectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Equine


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