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Czechs to be first to try uterine transplant from dead donors

ČTK |
16 May 2016

Prague, May 13 (CTK) - Doctors from the Prague-based Institute for Clinical and Experimental Medicine (IKEM) and the Motol University Hospital (FNM) will try as the first experts in the world to verify the possibility of uterus transplant from dead donors, they told journalists on Friday.

Until now, patients have received uterus from live donors only. Thirteen such surgeries have been performed worldwide so far.

The Czech Republic is the sixth country where it was performed. On April 30, when a 53-year-old mother donated her uterus to her 30-year-old daughter.

The IKEM presented both the patient and the donor on Friday. Both women fare well, the doctors said.

Uterus transplant can help the women who were born without uterus or lost it due to an illness. It is a chance for them to have a child of their own.

In the Czech Republic, from 2,000 to 4,000 women may be involved, the doctors said.

They have prepared a study including 20 surgeries. In a half of them, the patients will be given uterus from live donors, and in the remaining cases from dead donors.

"It will be the first study in the world that will compare the transplants from live and dead donors," IKEM director Ales Herman said.

The first transplant was performed in Saudi Arabia in 2000. It was a one-off surgery.

The first study was completed by doctors in Sweden in 2012 and 2013, when they implanted uteruses from live donors into nine women. Five children have been born to the patients so far.

It was also in Sweden where the first child was born by a woman after a uterus transplant in September 2014. The donor was a menopausal healthy woman who had given birth to two children before.

The pioneer of this type of transplant is Swedish Professor Mats Braennstroem who was given the 2014 annual prize of the Czech Transplant Association for his 11 successful uterus transplants after which four healthy babies were born by his patients.

One in about 5,000 women is born without uterus and others lose it during their lives, for instance, after an oncological disease, myoma or serious complications accompanying the child delivery due to which the uterus had to be removed.

Jiri Fronek, head doctor of the IKEM transplant surgery clinic, who participated in the Swedish study, told the media previously that uterus transplants might become a programme for the treatment of some congenital and acquired disorders in the future.

However, this type of transplants considerably differs from the more common heart, lungs and kidney transplants, since it is still in the phase of research in which only several dozen women participate, and not a commonly available therapy, he added.

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