When a 37-year-old Australian woman was diagnosed with breast cancer, she never thought she'd survive her ordeal, let alone ever become a mother.
But much to her surprise, she not only beat the disease -- she also wound up getting pregnant thanks to a breakthrough treatment using her own frozen ovarian tissue.
Before she started her cancer treatments, doctors removed a strip of her ovarian tissue and froze it. And in April, her oncologists deemed her healthy enough to try and conceive, so the tissue was thawed and re-implanted in her body, which allowed her to begin ovulating again.
And now that she's pregnant at 43, she's reportedly "over the moon, but still very shocked that it has actually happened."
Because of her success, the company behind the procedure, Monash IVF, is hoping to help other women who are about to undergo chemotherapy, and also those who have an increased risk of going into early menopause.
And what's really great about this treatment is that it seems like such a natural alternative as opposed to taking loads of hormones or having other more invasive fertility treatments done. (Supposedly it's cheaper too, which is a huge plus for sure.)
Oh, and you know what else is really cool? Since the tissue was taken from this woman when she was 37, the fact that she's 43 now doesn't even matter, because her eggs were frozen and didn't age along with the rest of her body. (Isn't that neat?)
OMG. I can't even imagine being diagnosed with cancer and feeling my heart sinking knowing there was a very good chance I'd never be able to have kids. This new treatment offers so much hope to women who think their dreams of motherhood are over, and it also gives them something extra to fight for while battling the disease.
And this could also be pretty revolutionary as far as women who want to have kids down the road, but aren't quite ready or haven't found Mr. Right by the time they are past their prime child-bearing years.
(Fingers crossed that something like this makes it to the U.S. in the near future.)
Would you have this procedure done if you were facing cancer or menopause?
Image via cscott2006/Flickr
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