World first: Woman gives birth after womb transplant

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A woman in Sweden, who was born without a uterus, was able to give birth to a baby boy after a womb transplant, a medical first, according to doctors and researchers.

‘The Lancet’, a British medical journal, published the medical breakthrough. According to the journal, the 36-year-old Swedish mother who was born without a uterus, gave birth to a premature baby boy last September, after receiving a donated womb from a close family friend who was in her 60s.

The infant was born at 31 weeks, weighing only 1.8kg or 3.9 lbs.. Both the mother and her baby are currently well and healthy, according to the medical team who conducted the procedure.

After the transplant at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Gothenburg, the mother had to take medications to prevent the womb from being rejected. A year after, the couple went through IVF to produce 11 embryos, one of which resulted to a successful pregnancy.

Dr Mats Brannstrom and his team performed the womb transplant in Gothenburg. (Photo credit: BBC News)
Dr Mats Brannstrom and his team performed the womb transplant in Gothenburg. (Photo credit: BBC News)

The names of the couple have not been released, but in an anonymous interview with Associated Press, the father said: “It was a pretty tough journey over the years, but we now have the most amazing baby. He’s no different from any other child, but he will have a good story to tell.”

Two other medical teams from Saudi Arabia and Turkey have tried womb transplants  but none of them were successful, and no live births resulted.

Dr. Mats Brannstrom, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Gothenburg and Stockholm IVF and head of the transplant team, said: “That was a fantastic happiness for me and the whole team, but it was an unreal sensation also because we really could not believe we had reached this moment.”

The gynecological surgeon in the team, Dr. Liza Johannesson, added:  “It gives hope to those women and men that thought they would never have a child, that thought they were out of hope.”