For the second time, Cleveland Clinic has delivered a baby from a uterus that was transplanted from a deceased donor.
The transplant and birth are part of an on-going clinical trial – Uterine Transplantation for the Treatment of Uterine Factor Infertility – at Cleveland Clinic, offering hope to women worldwide who are unable to have a baby due to uterine factor infertility. An estimated 1 in 500 women of childbearing age worldwide is affected by the irreversible condition.
Cleveland Clinic’s transplant surgeon, Cristiano Quintini, MD, is the principal investor for the clinical trial.
In March, the research team – comprised of specialists in transplant surgery, obstetrics and gynecology, fertility, neonatology, bioethics, psychiatry, nursing, anesthesiology, infectious disease, interventional radiology, pharmacy, patient advocacy and social work – welcomed a boy via cesarean section. The uterus, from a deceased donor, was transplanted in early 2019. In late 2019, Michelle, the mother, who is 31, became pregnant through in vitro fertilization.
Cleveland Clinic transplant surgeon Andreas Tzakis, MD, PhD, spearheaded bringing the uterus transplantation, which was the first in the United States and one of the first in the world, to Cleveland Clinic in 2015.
Since Cleveland Clinic began the clinical trial, the team has completed eight uterus transplants; six transplants were successful and two resulted in hysterectomies soon after transplantation.
The aim is to enroll ten women between the ages of 21 and 39 years old. Unlike similar research efforts in the U.S., Cleveland Clinic’s protocol calls for the transplanted uterus to come from a deceased donor in order to eliminate risk to a healthy, living donor.
Details of the clinical trial can be found at ClinicalTrials.gov