HEALTH

Swedish mother, daughter hope for uterus transplant

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Some doctors in Sweden are hoping to pull off a groundbreaking medical procedure -- the first successful transplant of a uterus.

One mother and daughter hope to be the patients in the historic surgeries.

Sara Ottosson was born with a rare condition known as MRKH syndrome, which means she was born without a uterus. About one out of 5,000 women have this condition.

“If she wants children she has to adopt,” said her mother Eva.

But Sara -- who did not want to speak on camera -- desperately wants to have her own baby. Her 56-year-old mother wants to help make her dream a reality.

“I happen to have a womb that I'm not using anymore, she doesn't have any, she needs one,” Eva Ottosson said.

Doctors in Sweden say they can carry out the world's first successful uterus transplant. After the transplant, using common in-vitro techniques, Sara’s own eggs would fertilized and implanted into the new womb, where the baby grows as normal.

“We would like to restrict the procedure for one, maybe two children and then the uterus will be removed… because we don't want too many side effects due to medication to the mother,” said transplant doctor Michael Olausson.

Despite the risks, Eva and her daughter say the surgery is worth trying.
In a statement to the British newspaper The Telegraph, Sara said "It would mean the world to me for this to work and to have children ... I am trying not to get my hopes up so that I am not disappointed."

This surgery has been attempted once before, ten years ago in Saudi Arabia. Doctors say the surgical techniques have since evolved.

Eva and Sara are among many women who have been tested by doctors to ensure that they are good candidates to have the complex surgery. The Swedish doctors are focusing on using a mother and daughter with the same blood type. Doctors believe these are the best candidates for this surgery because the chance of organ rejection is lower.

If Sara and Eva are chosen to be the first to have the new surgeries, the transplant could take place in the next few months.

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