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Woman gives birth using ovary frozen in her childhood in 'world first'

17 December 2016

In order for Matrooshi, 24, to receive a necessary bone-marrow transplant from her brother when she was a child, she had to first go through chemotherapy, which damages the ovaries.

The Dubai-born woman was diagnosed with a deadly blood disorder as a child so, as a preventative measure, doctors removed and then froze parts of her right ovary.

A year ago surgeons in Denmark transplanted parts of her ovarian tissues back to her body. Four were stitched on to her failed left ovary and one on to the side of her uterus.

Although Al Matrooshi had gone through menopause as a result of her blood-disorder treatment, her hormone levels began returning to normal following the procedure, and she began ovulating with her fertility restored.

Sara Matthews, a consultant in gynaecology and fertility and Moaza's specialist, told the BBC: "This is a huge step forward". And if that wasn't incredible enough, doctors have determined that she now has normal ovarian function, meaning menopause was completely reversed.

After her fertility returned to normal, Matrooshi and her husband underwent IVF treatment. Two of them were implanted earlier this year.

The result was a bouncing baby boy, delivered at London's Portland Hospital on Tuesday.

Science has come a long way in terms of helping people have babies.

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The successful birth presents "enormously valuable" news for the parents of young girls requiring risky medical treatments - such as chemotherapy - that can damage ovaries, said Helen Picton, who leads the division of reproduction and early development at the University of Leeds in England and carried out Al Matrooshi's ovary freezing.

Her fertility was restored after the preserved tissue was transplanted previous year, it said. Moaza is a pioneer and was one of the first patients we helped back in 2001, before any baby had been born from ovary tissue preservation.

‘"I didn't stop hoping and now I have this baby – it is a ideal feeling".

There have been other cases of women giving birth after using frozen ovaries, but Matrooshi is the first to use pre-pubescent freezing.

Moreover, now that researchers found that ovaries frozen before the patient reaches puberty work as good as those who are taken after the onset of puberty, they can help more girls keep their dream of someday becoming mothers.

Mrs Al Matrooshi still has one embryo in storage as well as two remaining pieces of ovarian tissue. For this reason, chemotherapy can often cause infertility in women. She told the BBC she definitely plans to have another baby in the future. But after marrying at age 20, the couple struggled to conceive naturally as al Matrooshi began displaying peri-menopausal symptoms, such as irregular periods and hot flashes.

Nearly 60 women have had their fertility restored with frozen tissue, since 2001.

In 2015, a team from the same hospital performed the procedure successfully using ovary tissue taken from a 13 year old.