This is a true story of a 21-year woman who got pregnant and became a mother after uterus transplant donated by her 43-year old mother from Solapur, Maharashtra. She got married at the age of 18 years. After two years of getting married, she got her checkup and realized she has some issues and unable to conceive. The couple went to many doctors for check-ups and screenings. Finally, at Solapur civil hospital the situation became clear, she actually had no uterus.
The couple and their family members were very upset. She really wanted to have her own baby. The only option that was left for her was to do something not commonly known or practiced before and had never happened before in India.
She needed to transplant her womb. It was her own mother who was ready to help her experience the feeling of getting pregnant and becoming a mother. Her mother’s uterus was found medically suitable for her. Approximately one out of 5,000 women are born without a uterus, a condition known as Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser syndrome. They would be unable to bear a child on their own without a transplant. Some women may go for the surgery process if they have had a hysterectomy or if their wombs have been injured or damaged or got some infection.1.5 million women are globally estimated to be affected by Uterine infertility.
Uterus transplant procedure
The first ever womb transplant was done in Sweden in 2012. The baby was born through C- section prematurely and today leading a happy life.This transplant is done in a following way.
- The eggs are removed from the patient.
- These eggs are fertilized with sperm.
- The resulting embryos are then frozen.
- The uterus is then removed from the donor and transplanted into the recipient.
- The embryos are implanted in the uterus a year after the transplant.
WHO can get benefit from uterus transplant
If the womb transplant procedure is safely adapted, many women facing challenges in conceiving can experience the feel and joy of being a mother. This includes:
- Women suffering from Asherman’s Syndrome (scar issue in uterus)
- Women suffering from cervical cancer
- Transgender women who desire to give birth
- Women suffering from absolute uterine infertility
Risk involved in uterus transplant
It’s always fraught with risks to have an organ transplant operation. After all, it is a whole organ we are going to transplant, and to be introduced in the foreign body, and there is always a chance of rejection from the recipient side. Till now, as many as 11 womb transplant attempts worldwide have been unsuccessful. The operation in Pune was a high-risk too, and lasted for nine years and a half hour!
“The procedure is difficult because multiple large arteries are to be joined there, and veins that are small and short. It is technically very tough.”Dr. Shailesh Puntambekar
GCLI Medical Director
She also said that the doctor has to remove the transplanted uterus after she delivers a bay, Otherwise, it would leave them on immunosuppressants throughout life as long as they are carrying that transplanted uterus.