Two field trials were carried out by five experienced veterinary surgeons to evaluate the milk progesterone test as an aid to the differential diagnosis of cystic ovaries in dairy cows. Of 200 cystic cows, 71 per cent were diagnosed clinically as follicular and 29 per cent as luteal cases; 80 per cent of the cases occurred in the six winter months November to April. The progesterone assay indicated that the diagnosis was correct in 84 per cent of the follicular cases but only 54 per cent of the luteal cases. Seventy-four per cent of the confirmed cystic cases responded to treatment within two weeks according to milk progesterone tests and there were no significant treatment differences. Overall, 80 per cent of the cows became pregnant on average 38 days after treatment having received an average of 1.70 inseminations each. Milk yield data in the first trial indicated that the cystic cows were not significantly higher yielders than their herd-mates.
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