The purpose of this paper is to compare the stereology methods to estimate cell volume. For particle volume estimates, a variety of local size estimators has been developed, beginning with assumption-based methods like planimetry. However, modern stereology provides new theoretically unbiased methods like rotator and nucleator ones. The planimetry, rotator and nucleator methods are illustrated by estimating neuronal nuclear volume in the mammillary bodies of control and cirrhotic rats. Cirrhotic rats show larger neuron nucleus volume than controls in all the mammillary nuclei. This difference was obtained with all the probes. Comparing the probes, we obtain smaller nuclear volume using planimetry than with the rotator and nucleator probes. Our results are discussed comparing the probes and the advantages and disadvantages of local size estimators to measure neuronal nuclear volume are suggested.