Medicine has reached a milestone in the United States: for the first time, a woman suffering from the so-called Rokitansky syndrome (without a uterus or vagina) has given birth to a baby. All thanks to a pioneer transplant of uterus in the country.
Until very recently, women who had uterine factor infertility and wished to be mothers could not have children. However, in 2014 everything changed thanks to a pioneering operation in Sweden. A woman gave birth to a baby as a result of a successful uterine transplant.
Now, and according to doctors from Baylor University, the United States has achieved the same success. For the first time this surgery is a success outside the Swedish hospital.
It is estimated that one in every 5 thousand women in the world are born with vaginal agenesis (or Rokitansky syndrome), a malformative clinical picture with absence of vagina, uterus and even without cervix (cervix), although with functional ovaries.
In 2014 everything changed thanks to a pioneering operation in Sweden. A woman gave birth to a baby as a result of a successful uterus transplant
It is a congenital disorder in women in whom embryonic Müllerian ducts do not develop, and as a consequence the uterus is not present at birth. The main symptom is a primary amenorrhea, that is, failure in the appearance of the first menstrual cycle rule.
The operation three years ago changed the perspective of thousands of women in the world. The fact that this success can also be reproduced outside of Sweden is an even more promising sign for women who have not been able to conceive.
The baby shortly after birth. Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas
As explained by the Baylor medical team, they tried to extend the limits of the procedure using donated uteri that do not come from family members and, in some cases (less), organs that come from corpses. For Liza Johannesson, uterus transplant surgeon who left the Swedish team to join the Baylor group:
“To make the field grow and expand and have the procedure come out to more women, it has to be reproduced,” she said, adding that within hours of Baylor’s announcement, advocacy groups for women with uterine infertility from all over the world had contacted her to express their excitement at the news.
“It was a very exciting birth,” Dr. Johannesson said. “I’ve seen so many births and delivered so many babies, but this was a very special one.”
The Baylor trial was designed to include 10 women. Eight, including the new mother, have received the transplants so far. One of them is pregnant and two are trying to conceive. Four others had transplants that failed and the organs had to be surgically removed.
Although the university has not revealed the names of the mother or the baby, it has been reported that the donor’s uterus came from Taylor Siler, a Dallas nurse who has two children. Apparently, Siler wanted to offer another woman the opportunity to give birth, and with the help of science this new mother and many others waiting, can fulfill a dream that until recently was unthinkable.