Denmark Woman is First to Give Birth Twice After Ovary Reimplantation

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From Denmark comes the news of a woman becoming the first to have a second child after reimplantation of ovarian tissue. Stinne Holm Bergholdt, 32, and her husband Flemming now have two daughters.

The announcement has been made in the journal Human Reproduction. Professor Claus Yding Andersen, Professor of Human Reproductive Physiology at the University Hospital of Copenhagen, said: “This is the first time in the world that a woman has had two children from separate pregnancies as a result of transplanting frozen/thawed ovarian tissue.”

Stinne received her ovarian reimplantation following treatment for Ewing’s sarcoma when she was 27 in 2004. Her reimplantation involved replacing strips of her left ovary which had been removed prior to her cancer treatment. The reimplantation took place in 2005 and were noted to begin functioning normally.

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For her first pregnancy, Stinne, was given fertility drugs to “stimulate” her ovary function. This resulted in the birth of her first daughter Aviaja in February 2007.

Her second pregnancy needed no help from fertility drugs, but occurred naturally. She found out she was pregnant when she returned to the fertility clinic to ask for help with a second pregnancy. Her second daughter Lucca was born in September.

She is reported to have said, “The second time it was quite a surprise to find out I was pregnant since we hadn't been working on it – we thought we needed assistance like the first time. We had an appointment at the fertility outpatient clinic to talk about the possibility of a second baby, but it turned out that I was already pregnant – naturally. It was a very nice surprise to find out that my body was now functioning normally and that we were having a baby without having to go through the fertility treatment. It was indeed a miracle.”

Ovary transplants are becoming more common. The technique is used to help women with cancer as a method of preserving fertility after chemotherapy or other treatments that can affect the reproductive system. The procedure involves removing the ovaries before treatment and re-implanting them after treatment is complete.

Sources
European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology

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