The first uterus transplant performed in the U.S. has failed due to a serious medical complication in the transplant recipient. Lindsey, a 26 year-old who was born without a uterus and who has three adopted children, is the first of 10 women on the uterus transplant list at the Cleveland Clinic. Lindsey had hoped to conceive a child — and the long road following surgery would have included anti-rejection meds, waiting a year to attempt to conceive to allow the transplanted uterus to heal, and, following the birth of one or two children, a hysterectomy to remove the transplanted uterus. The nature of the complication is unknown and believed to be sudden, but it did require the removal of the new uterus. Aside from this first U.S. attempt, in global news, Sweden has successfully transplanted uteri in nine women, with several healthy babies later being born as a result. Sweden’s success is encouraging for the 3-5% of women around the world who live with Uterine Factor Infertility, a condition in which women are born without a uterus or with a uterus that is unable to carry a pregnancy. The Cleveland Clinic team trained with the Swedish surgeons for a decade prior to this first uterus transplant attempt. Following the Cleveland Clinic’s announcement, Lindsey made one of her own, thanking her doctors and reassuring the public that she is okay.
Lead image © Cleveland Clinic