||[Feb. 12th, 2007|03:51 pm]
Source: Houston Chronicle (www.chron.com)|
Feb. 9, 2007, 11:28PM1st U.S. uterus transplant may be tried in '08
By NANCY MCVICARMcclatchy-tribune
FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA.— A team of South Florida doctors said Friday that they expect to perform their first uterus transplant sometime within the next year, a feat that has yet to be attempted in the United States.
Dr. Andreas Tzakis, who has pioneered abdominal wall and multi-organ transplants at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine/Jackson Memorial Hospital, said transplanting a uterus so that a woman can carry her own baby is a next logical step, just as hand transplants and face transplants have broken new ground at other medical centers.
A woman who has had her uterus removed because of fibroid tumors, postpartum hemorrhage or injury may be a candidate. The doctors have termed the condition "uterine-factor infertility." The replacement uterus would come from a woman who has died and has signed an organ donor card.
The transplant recipient would need to take anti-rejection drugs to prevent her body from trying to destroy it. The drugs are not expected to have any ill effects on the baby.
Tzakis said hundreds of women taking the drugs after kidney transplants — and about 200 taking the drugs after liver transplants — have had successful pregnancies.
Only one uterus transplant is known to have occurred, Tzakis said. That was in Saudi Arabia and the organ had to be removed about three months later because its blood supply became blocked.
Dr. George Attia, a UM reproductive endocrinologist and infertility specialist working with Tzakis' team, said he doesn't know how many women are potential candidates for the procedure.
The plan, which must first be approved by the university's institutional review board and ethics committee, calls for a donor uterus to be implanted along with all the blood vessels required. After it has had time to heal, one embryo created through mixing sperm and egg in the lab would be implanted into the new womb.
The baby would be delivered by C-section, Attia said.