The New York Downtown Hospital is planning to carry out the first ever successful uterus transplant. The procedure had been attempted six years ago in Saudi Arabia, but failed. Women who do not have a uterus, such as those who underwent a hysterectomy, would possibly have the chance to conceive. The transplant might also help women who have a damaged or defective uterus.

The medical team is currently screening women who want to have children but are unable to.

Team leader, Giuseppe Del Priore M.D., M.P.H., said that the desire to have a child is a tremendous driving force for many women. He believes he and his team may be able to help many women fulfill “this very basic desire”.

Even though such a transplant is not planned for the very near future, Del Priore told The Washington Post that a transplant may be attempted towards the end of this year.

Several experts have voiced concern about carrying out such a procedure before further animal tests are done. Others wonder whether the risks may be greater than the benefits for both the woman and the fetus.

Note added March 7th, 2014

In the spring of 2013, a team of researchers and doctors at the University of Gothenburg performed the last of nine planned uterus transplants. The six-month follow up shows that live-donor uterus transplantation has a low risk despite extended surgery duration. Please view the article “Next step in live-donor uterus transplant project” for further information.

Note added October 6th, 2014

A new article has been released today: “World first: baby born after womb transplantation“. Please see this new article for a link to contact the researchers.

Note added October 6th, 2015

The article “Womb transplantation approved for 10 British women” may also be of interest.

Note added October 16th, 2015

Another related article was published on the 13th November 2015: “First clinical trial of uterus transplantation in the US wins approval

Written by Christian Nordqvist