Grafted ovaries and ovarian tissue could now allow women to extend their fertility.
Women can now potentially extend their fertile
years (and stave off menopause) by undergoing ovarian grafts or transplants,
according to the Daily Mail. Dr. Sherman Silber, the top surgeon who, in 2007
transplanted the ovary of one twin into her infertile sister, insists that this
breakthrough procedure has huge potential for social benefits, including
allowing career women to hold off from having babies for longer.
Ovarian tissue/ovary transplants are already
used to preserve the ovaries of those about to undergo cancer treatment, as the
drugs used to treat cancer may destroy the ovaries- slices of tissue are taken
in advance, frozen, and then thawed and re-implanted once the woman is ready to
22 women have given birth after having their ovarian tissue restored.
The latest success was achieved in Italy seven years after a 21-year-old woman
had ovarian tissue frozen before cancer treatment.
The treatment has been proven to be effective on fresh tissue as well as
tissue which has been frozen and thawed.
In the case of Silber’s procedures, the tissue was mostly donated by
In 2008 he predicted that women who had an ovary frozen in their
20s could look forward to the best of all worlds.
‘A young ovary can be transplanted back at any time and it will extend
fertility and delay the menopause. You could even wait until you were 47,’ he
Now he’s using successful ovarian grafts as proof that fertility may be
extended, suggesting that ovarian transplants will, in the future, be an
effective means of delaying menopause and treating its symptoms.
The medical fraternity is divided over his
suggestion that ovarian grafts or transplants should be used for social reasons
such choosing to delay pregnancy, as the technology was developed specifically for cancer patients.
Who do you think should benefit from ovarian grafts
By: By Scott Dunlop