CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Clinic in Ohio says it has delivered the first baby in North America from a womb transplanted from a dead donor.
Uterine transplants have enabled more than a dozen women to give birth, usually with wombs donated from a living donor such as a friend or a relative. In December, doctors in Brazil reported the world’s first birth using a deceased donor’s womb.
“Through this research, we aim to make these extraordinary events ordinary for the women who choose this option,” transplant surgeon Andreas Tzakis said in a statement on the hospital’s website. “We are grateful to the donor. Their generosity allowed our patient’s dream to come true and a new baby to be born.”
These types of transplants were pioneered in Sweden, where the first successful procedure was performed five years ago.
The Cleveland hospital said Tuesday that the girl was born in June. The clinic has done five uterus transplants so far and three have been successful, with two women waiting to attempt pregnancy with new wombs.
The hospital said its program uses wombs from female donors who have died recently, as opposed to using a live donor “who would need to have major abdominal surgery to have her uterus removed.”
In all, the clinic aims to enroll 10 women in its study.