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posted by martyb on Friday March 11 2016, @03:46PM   Printer-friendly
from the hard-to-take dept.

Two Soylentils wrote in about the failure of the United States' first attempted uterus transplant:

Uterine Transplant Fails

The Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio, has embarked upon a programme of uterine transplantation, with surgeries planned on a total of ten patients. The first recipient, however, has suffered an unspecified "sudden complication" and the transplanted uterus, which was obtained from a cadaver, has been removed.

The first uterine transplant, which was unsuccessful, was performed in 1931. This was the first time the procedure had been attempted in the United States, where it is still considered experimental.



First Uterus Transplant in the U.S. Fails After Complication

The first ever attempted uterus transplant in the U.S. has failed after an unknown complication occurred:

The Cleveland Clinic says it has removed a transplanted uterus — the first-ever in the U.S. — after the patient suffered from a "sudden complication."

The clinic conducted the landmark operation in late February. As we reported, the procedure is intended to "open up another possible path to parenthood besides surrogacy or adoption for U.S. women who do not have a uterus, or who have a uterus that does not function."

The transplant was part of a study that the clinic says is meant to include 10 women with uterine factor infertility, meaning "they were born without a uterus, have lost their uterus, or have a uterus that no longer functions." The clinic says in a statement that the study will continue despite this setback.

The risky procedure takes into account the chance of the body rejecting the organ by including the administration of anti-rejection drugs throughout the years following the surgery as well as monthly cervical biopsies to check for organ rejection. In vitro fertilization is used to create embryos that will be implanted in the uterus. The transplant is intended to be temporary, and after the successful childbirth of one or two babies the transplanted uterus is either removed by a hysterectomy or allowed to disintegrate. Nine uterus transplants have taken place in Sweden, resulting in 5 pregnancies and 4 births.

Study about the first ever live birth following a uterus transplant: Livebirth after uterus transplantation (DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(14)61728-1)

Original Submission #1Original Submission #2

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  • (Score: 2) by Dunbal on Friday March 11 2016, @05:16PM

    by Dunbal (3515) on Friday March 11 2016, @05:16PM (#317077)

    Imho, this is an unethical medical procedure.

    Not to mention the possibility of necessarily exposing any pregnancy to all those immunosuppressant drugs. I'm sure they're not all "Category A" []. It's one thing to see if something can be done. But being able to do something is not necessarily a good enough reason to do it. Once we can grow or print a uterus from stem cells and perform what would essentially be an autograft - with minimal rejection possibility - this procedure would become viable. As it is, however, I think there's a certain lack of forward thinking that went into the process.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 11 2016, @09:04PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 11 2016, @09:04PM (#317159)

    Some women have to take immunosuppressive drugs to prevent their immune system from killing their babies. Unless the baby is a result of multiple inbreeding events, it will be foreign to the mother.

  • (Score: 2) by bob_super on Friday March 11 2016, @09:13PM

    by bob_super (1357) on Friday March 11 2016, @09:13PM (#317168)

    Regardless of how you get your uterus, the part that worries me is that a pregnancy massively stretches the uterus. And it'd better remain perfectly connected to all the nutrient sources as it crushes everything around it until it stretches a woman's waist to a few times the original size. And it gets kicked around from the inside, then has to massively contract (correctly) to eject its contents (though there's a bypass for that one).

    There's a million ways a pregnancy can go wrong (when in med school, my sister always joked she wondered how any babies are born healthy at all, given the known stats and the unknown factors).
    Having a pregnancy inside a uterus that some human did a best-effort at connecting sounds absolutely friggin' nuts!!!!!

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 12 2016, @12:02AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 12 2016, @12:02AM (#317227)

      From TFS:

      Nine uterus transplants have taken place in Sweden, resulting in 5 pregnancies and 4 births.

      It sounds "absolutely friggin' nuts!", but that is one of the amazing things about modern medicine.