Sunday, 26 January 2014

THIS IS AMAZING: Woman 'to become first in the world to give birth to a baby from a transplanted womb' after doctors successfully implant embryo

A women is set to become the first in the world to give birth from a transplanted womb after doctors successfully implanted an embryo into her body.
The unnamed woman, who was born without a womb, was one of nine to receive a womb transplant in Sweden between September 2012 and April last year.
It is now hoped she will become the first in the world to successfully give birth following the procedure after doctors managed to transfer an embryo grown from the woman's own egg last week. 
This means any child she has through IVF would genetically be her own.
The Swedish women received wombs donated by living female relatives. Image shows the University of Gothenburg team practising how to carry out the operations
New hope: An unnamed woman may now become the first in the world to give birth to a womb transplant baby after doctors successfully transferred an embryo into her body. Image shows Sweden's University of Gothenburg team practising how to carry out the womb transplant operation ahead of the procedure
And as her transplanted womb was transferred by her mother, her baby would also be the first in the world to be born from the same womb as their mother.
 

Dr Mats Brannstrom, professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Gothenburg, who led the transplant team, told The Sunday Telegraph: 'The best scenario is a baby in nine months.
The womb recipients all had their transplants after either being born without a womb or having it removed because of cervical cancer. Picture shows the Swedish surgical team practising the transplant operation
The woman was one of nine to undergo womb transplants in Sweden between September 2012 and April last year. Picture shows the Swedish surgical team practising the transplant operation
'A success would be an important proof of principle that a procedure is now available to cure uterine infertility.'
The woman suffers from MRKH syndrome, a congenital disorder which prevents the womb from developing, but means she still has intact ovaries which produce eggs.
This meant her egg could be fertilised outside of her body and the embryo then placed in her womb.
But the woman will have to wait and see if the embryo successfully embeds in her uterine wall before she will know if she is in fact pregnant.
Dr Brannstrom admits it's impossible to estimate the chance of success.
He told the newspaper: 'We know the pregnancy rate in the normal population − the chance for one embryo would be about 25 per cent − so it may take some trials until we get a pregnancy, or we may be lucky and get a pregnancy first time. We don’t know.'
Seven of the other transplant patients also suffered from this condition while the ninth had her womb removed after suffering cervical cancer.
The development will give hope to thousands of childless women across Europe and at least 15,000 in the UK.
The method has been controversial though because it involves taking wombs from living donors. The Swedish team favours it because the organs are generally in better condition and a better immunological match.
Other surgeons in the same field do not believe it is right to put a living donor through such a major operation when it is not life-saving.
The women will not be able to conceive naturally as their wombs are not connected to their fallopian tubes. They will have IVF treatment to allow them to become pregnant with embryos they previously had frozen
Procedure: Doctors grew an embryo from the woman's own egg before implanting it in her transplanted womb as it is not connected to her fallopian tubes
They say the best option is to use an organ from a dead donor. This allows them to transplant extra tissue and the major blood vessels needed to take the strain of pregnancy.
Richard Smith, head of Womb Transplant UK, said earlier this month that the charity is ready to give five British women wombs from dead donors, subject to receiving ethical clearance and raising the £500,000 required to cover the cost of surgery. ‘We are good to go, save for the fact we haven’t got any money,’ he said.
Derya Sert, pictured, from Turkey, had a transplant in August 2011 and subsequently conceived but she miscarried after eight weeks of pregnancy
Derya Sert, pictured, from Turkey, had a transplant in August 2011 and subsequently conceived but she miscarried after eight weeks of pregnancy
Mr Smith, a consultant gynaecological surgeon, described the Swedish breakthrough as ‘amazing’ and said a successful birth would bolster similar projects around the world.
Any babies the Swedish women bear are likely to be delivered by caesarean section and the new wombs will be removed after only one or two pregnancies.
The women are on powerful immunosuppressant drugs but the biggest worry is how well a transplanted womb will cope with the strains of pregnancy, during which the womb swells from the size of a pear to that of a melon.
Critics question the process, with fertility expert Lord Winston saying the risks are too great and some women should accept that they will never bear children.
Those in favour say it is the only way for some women to fulfil their deep-seated yearning to have a baby.
Experts say the operations will only be considered a success on the birth of a healthy baby.
Dr Yacoub Khalaf, medical director of the Assisted Conception unit at Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospital in London, said: ‘What remains to be seen is whether this is a viable option or if this is going to be confined to research and limited experimentation.’
The world’s first womb transplant took place in Saudi Arabia in 2000. However, the woman’s body rejected the donated organ after four months.
Turkish doctors performed a successful transplant in 2011, but patient Derya Sert lost her baby during pregnancy last year.

Daily Mail
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