Few days back United states performed its first successful uterus transplant. Unlike kidney or liver transplant, this is relatively a newer concept, giving the hope of child birth to millions of ladies suffering from diseased or absent uterus because of which they are unable to conceive.
There is a specific type of infertility known as absolute uterine factor infertility. In this, the uterus is either absent since the birth or is diseased. Due to this, the fertilized embryo fails to get implanted and the lady could not conceive. Today 2%-5% of the population suffers from this type of infertility. Uterine transplant is a potential treatment for this form of infertility. The uterus is taken from a living or deceased donor. Before the transplant, the patient is put on immunosuppressant medicines which prevents the immune mechanism of recipient acting against the uterus. Once the uterus is successfully transplanted, a healing time of at least one year is necessary before pregnancy could be planned. As fallopian tube is not connected to the uterus during the transplant, the patient has to rely on IVF (In vitro fertilization) for conception. As the transplanted uterus is too fragile to bear the load of labor, a caesarian child birth has to be compulsorily performed. After the successful child birth, the uterus is again surgically removed. This is because the patient needs to be continuously administered the immunosuppressant medicines to avoid transplant rejection so long as the uterus is inside.
The uterine transplant offers equal opportunity for male and trans-sexual to conceive and have child. This possibility led to lot many debates regarding the ethical aspect of uterine transplant. Hence, Montreal criteria for ethical feasibility of uterine transplant was written by Ariel Lefkowitz, Marcel Edwards and Jacques Balayla. They advocated that this option should be open just to females with uterine defect and not to males or trans-sexual.
Whatever be the concern of ethical gurus, this technique is definitely, another landmark chapter of medical evolution and opens the scope for transplant of other organs too.