At Baylor University Medical Center, history has been made for the United States. A person who had not been born with a uterus had one implanted and now has successfully given birth with it.
The feat had been achieved years before in Sweden, but this is the first case in the United States. There have only been a handful of uterus transplants ever done, but now with the success seen here, the practice has been spreading.
The woman has not been identified, as to keep her privacy intact, but the news was still big enough to be covered in Time magazine. Baylor medical professionals want to do at least ten transplants. They had done four already, but three failed, due to the fact that not enough blood would flow into the foreign organ.
The people giving the wombs are usually the living female family members of the recipient, although it is possible to take from a freshly deceased body. One other caveat is that eggs of the recipient must first be removed and frozen, for later use for in vitro fertilization.
Then, the baby would have to be delivered by C-section. The donated uterus is not forever, either- it is also only meant to be used for one or perhaps two pregnancies, as the body’s immune system will start to attack the organ as foreign, rendering it useless.
The American Society for Reproductive Medicine has praised the successful birth, saying it was an “important milestone in the history of reproductive medicine.” They also stressed the sheer importance of the procedure, as “transplantation represents the only way [those without functioning uteri] can carry a pregnancy.”
Overall, this is an important step forward not only for Americans, but for wannabe mothers everywhere in the world. Hopefully, the study will continue to be successful, and the transplantation becomes standard in hospitals nationwide.