A woman has become the first to give birth to a healthy child after doctors restored her fertility by transplanting into her ovarian tissue that was removed and frozen when she was a child, Reuters reported.
The Congolese-Belgian woman was diagnosed with sickle-cell anemia when she was five and emigrated to Belgium at age 11.
The girl needed a bone marrow transplant to treat her sickle-cell condition — which required chemotherapy first.
Thinking of her future potential to have a family, the Belgian doctors decided before starting the treatment to remove the patient’s right ovary when she was 13 years and 11 months old and froze tissue fragments.
After the girl underwent chemotherapy, a bone marrow transplant and more than a year of treatment with immuno-suppressive drugs, her remaining ovary failed at the age of 15.
Twelve years later, after doctors successfully transplanted the thawed ovarian tissue, the woman became pregnant at age 27 and delivered a healthy boy in November 2014.
Reporting the success in the journal Human Reproduction, Belgian doctors said it pointed to a future where children with serious illnesses such as cancer may find a way to have babies many years later.
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