First Uterus Transplant Recipient is Doing Well
Cleveland Clinic doctors say the recipient of the country's first uterus transplant is healing well.
Surrounded by her husband and team of doctors a 26-year old woman, identified only as Lindsey, says she is "beyond thankful" to the family who donated the uterus she will use to carry a baby.
"At the age of 16, I was told I would never have children,” Lindsey said. “And from that moment on I have prayed that God would allow me the opportunity to experience pregnancy. And here we are today at the beginning of that journey."
Doctors say Lindsey is among an estimated one in 5,000 women in the U.S. born with normal ovaries but no uterus. During a 9-hour surgery last month, doctors transplanted the uterus from a woman in her ‘30's who died suddenly.
Before the surgery doctors say they saved six to 10 embryos from Lindsey. They’ll wait a year for the new uterus to heal before implanting an embryo.
Doctor Uma Perni, an OB-GYN in high-risk pregnancies, says she’ll monitor this mother of three adopted boys during her pregnancy and to be on the safe-side she’ll have a C-section delivery.
“We don't know how this uterus would act to normal signals of labor,” said Dr. Perni. “In addition, there are some complex connections. We wouldn't want to disrupt. We don't know how they would tolerate a normal vaginal delivery.”
Doctors say after two pregnancies the uterus will be removed so that Lindsey can stop taking drugs that prevent her body from rejecting the new uterus. The Clinic plans to perform nine more uterine transplants as part of its clinical trial.