#Justin: World's first uterus transplant: Can it help improve fertility rates in women?

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Surgeons in Ohio carried out the world's first successful uterus implant. Here's why they did it and how.

Till about a few years back, it was difficult for women who were unable to conceive naturally to try anything except in-vitro fertilisation or adoption. But that is soon going to be a thing of the past. In a revolutionary move, surgeons at the the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, US, performed a uterus transplant in a nine-hour surgery.

The 26-year-old patient, received the organ from a deceased donor and is reportedly recovering successfully. The clinic released a statement where they stated that the screening procedure of potential patients suffering from Uterine Factor Infertility (UFI) started almost an year back.

What is Uterine Factor Infertility (UFI)?

Women who suffer from UFI, are either born without a uterus or suffer from serious damage to their uterus. The clinic suggests that it affects almost 3-5 percent women across the globe. So while the uterus transplant is a miraculous option for women suffering from this irreversible problem, it is not permanent.

Procedure of uterus transplant

This is what happens in the year-long procedure:

  • Women who are inducted in the procedure get their eggs removed from the ovaries and then free the embryos. They are then implanted with the eggs an year after the transplant.
  • Once the operation is done, women are given immune system-suppressing drugs to prevent any organ rejection.
  • They also have to undergo monthly biopsies.
  • Babies conceived through the procedure are delivered through a c-section.
  • The transplanted uterus can be removed after the couple has had the number of children they so desire. The drugs are then stopped.

An infographic detailing the transplant and its uses was released by the clinic and this is the information they shared:

  • The uterus implant is life-saving and not long lasting
  • The transplanted uterus is then removed or allowed to disintegrate

Future of uterus transplant in India

While this was the first of its kind transplant in the US; in 2014, a Swedish woman become the world's first mother to deliver a baby after having a womb transplant. Indian experts suggest that since this procedure is new and will take some more research to be fully-functional everywhere, there are chances Indian women could avail off it in the future.

We sure do hope that this procedure is soon implemented worldwide to help women who are unable to conceive naturally.

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Written by

Deepshikha Punj

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