Ovarian Veins


Ovarian veins can have incompetent (faulty) valves, and may actually connect with and contribute to varicose veins in the leg. Incompetent pelvic veins may also produce pelvic symptoms in som people. This study aims to determine whether each ovarian vein is normal or if one or both are incompetent (ie have faulty valves). This helps determine if ligation of the ovarian vein is likely to be of benefit.


For morning scan appointments, fast from midnight the night before the examination (no food, fluid, no smoking, no chewing gum). For afternoon appointments, fast for 8 hours prior to your scan time. Diabetics using insulin should not fast. Diabetics not using insulin should notify us when booking the test, and we will endeavour to make your appointment early in the morning. If this is possible, we would like you to fast as above. All patients should take their usual oral medications with a small amount of water.

Wear loose clothing which allows the lower abdomen and both groins to be easily exposed. A gown is provided and the scan is performed in complete privacy.


Jelly is placed on the skin of the lower abdomen and an ultrasound probe is pressed against the area. The ovarian veins are identified and the direction of blood flow is determined ( see the section on “how ultrasound works” for more details). The diameter of the ovarian vein is measured. Adjacent veins may also be examined.


15 – 20 minutes.


Each ovarian vein is either incompetent or competent.

Click here to view the worksheet.

Case 1
Case 2
Case 3