First baby born using uterus transplant from dead donor, doctors say

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The world’s first baby has been born using a uterus transplanted from a deceased donor, according to Brazilian doctors.

The healthy baby girl was delivered last December to a 32-year-old woman who wasn’t born with a uterus. The mother used the uterus of a 45-year-old woman who had three previous children and died of a stroke, as detailed in a case report published in the medical journal Lancet on Tuesday.

The uterus from the deceased donor was implanted during a 10-hour operation. After seven months, doctors implanted an embryo made using in-vitro fertilization to spur the pregnancy.

The baby was delivered by way of a cesarean section on Dec. 15, 2017 at around 36 weeks into the pregnancy. She was 5.6 pounds. Doctors then removed the uterus so the mother would not have to continue anti-rejection medications.

Nearly a year later, the mother and baby are both healthy.

There have been several successful pregnancies using uterus transplants from live donors, since the procedure was pioneered by Swedish doctor Mats Brannstrom about five years ago. The possibility of successful pregnancies using deceased donors expands the possibilities for fertility.

In 2016, doctors at the Cleveland Clinic attempted a pregnancy using a uterus from a deceased donor, but it failed because of an infection.

“The Brazilian group has proven that using deceased donors is a viable option,” said the Cleveland Clinic’s Dr. Tommaso Falcone. “It may give us a bigger supply of organs than we thought were possible.”

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The Brazilian researchers are planning two more uterus transplants as part of the study.

“There are still lots of things we don’t understand about pregnancies, like how embryos implant,” said Dr. Cesar Diaz, who co-authored an accompanying commentary in the journal. “These transplants will help us understand implantation and every stage of pregnancy.”

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In this Dec. 15, 2017 photo provided by transplant surgeon Dr. Wellington Andraus, left with magnifying glasses, he and Dr. Dani Ejzenberg, second left, confer with colleagues at the Hospital das Clinicas of the University of Sao Paulo School of Medicine, Sao Paulo, Brazil, on the day of the birth of the baby girl born to a woman with a uterus transplanted from a deceased donor. (Photo: Courtesy Dr. Wellington Andraus via AP)

Contributing: The Associated Press. Follow Ashley May on Twitter: @AshleyMayTweets

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