A MUM has become the first in the world to give birth to a baby after a womb transplant performed by a robot, doctors have revealed.
The unnamed woman, from Sweden, gave birth to her healthy son, weighing 6lbs 3oz, on Monday.
Lennart Wiman An unnamed baby boy has become the first to be born after his mum had a womb transplant – performed by a robot
Mum and baby are both doing well, after a planned C-section.First op by a robot
It marks the first time a baby has been born after a womb transplant, carried out by a robot.
There have been around 39 womb transplants using a live donor, including mums who have donated their wombs to their daughters.
As a result 11 babies have been born.
Meanwhile, ten transplants from a dead donor have failed or resulted in miscarriage.
Last December, a baby girl became the first to be born after a transplant from a dead donor.
Robotic op is ‘less invasive’
And this latest case marks the next step – using keyhole surgery and a robot, which is “considerably less invasive” for patients.
Dr Pernilla Dahm-Kähler, a leading robot-assisted surgeon and gynaecologist, at the University of Gothenburg, said: “It’s a fantastic feeling to deliver such a special, longed-for child.
“To have been part of the whole process, from the first meeting with the couple to the uterus transplant, and now to see everyone’s joy when what we’ve hoped for becomes reality.
“It’s simply wonderful.”
Gran donated womb to her daughter
The boy’s mum received her womb transplant from her own mother.
The donor was operated on using robot-assisted keyhole surgery.
Mats Brännström, professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at the uni’s Sahlgrenska Academy, heads the research work.
He said: “This is an extremely important step toward developing the surgery involved in uterine transplantation, and its safety.
This is an extremely important step toward developing the surgery involved in uterine transplantation, and its safetyMats Brännström, professor of obstetrics and gynaecology
“For the first time, we’re showing that the less invasive robot-assisted surgical technique is practicable.”
The donor was operated on through a series of 1cm incisions in the tummy.
The robotic arms that perform the op are guided by two surgeons, one on each side of the patient.
Each surgeon sits at a personal workstation a few metres away, with a joystick and magnified 3D screen image that allows for high precision operating, deep in the abdomen.
Towards the end of the op another incision is made so the womb can be removed.
It was then immediately transplanted into the donor’s daughter, by means of open surgery.
The new technique makes a big difference for donors, who tend to feel better afterwards and recover from the op faster.Future of womb transplants
Niclas Kvarnström is the transplant surgeon in charge within the project, and the physician who performed the intricate task of connecting vessels in the uterus recipient.
“In the future, we’re also going to be able to transplant the uterus into the recipient using a robot-assisted keyhole technique.”
The womb transplant was carried out at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in October 2017.
Ten months later, an embryo fertilised via IVF before the transplantation was inserted into the transplanted uterus.
And a few weeks later, the doctors were able to confirm pregnancy with a distinct heartbeat.
The woman’s pregnancy was free of complications and mum enjoyed good health throughout.
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The baby boy is the ninth born in Sweden following a womb transplant – and the first in what the research team are calling the “Robot Project”.
Six transplantation ops were performed in 2017 and 2018, and the team is now preparing to perform the first womb transplant using an organ from a dead donor.
To date, a total of 15 babies worldwide have been born from a transplanted uterus.
Besides the nine born within the scope of this Sahlgrenska Academy research, there are two in the United States and one each in Brazil, Serbia, India and China.
Prof Mats Brännström points out the great importance of the technique, developed over more than 15 years’ research at Sahlgrenska Academy, now also functioning elsewhere in the world—in several cases, following direct technology transfer from the team at Sahlgrenska.
University Of Gothenburg The op is the first womb transplant to use a robot to remove the donor’s uterus
University Of Gothenburg Using a robot is ‘less invasive’ for the donor, and helps them recover faster afterwards, doctors at the University of Gothenburg said
Björn Larsson Rosvall Prof Mats Brännström heads up the team who are leading the research into womb transplants
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