Baby born from 20 year old frozen embryo

A 42 year old mother gave birth to a baby born from an embryo frozen 20 years ago. This is the longest time a fertilized egg has been stored before developing into a healthy baby, and could eventually lead to thousands of women having children in middle age feel experts.

The new mother has been undergoing ten years of IVF but was unable to conceive. However last year the frozen embryo created by another couple was implanted into her womb and in May she gave birth to a boy weighing 6lb 15oz.

This embryo was created with four others when the couple were having successful IVF treatment in 1990. After one of these was successfully implanted they donated the other four for 'adoption' and they were frozen. Two decades later the four embryos were offered to the 42-year-old woman and her husband at the U.S. clinic where they were undergoing fertility treatment. Only two embryos survived and they were planted in the woman's womb. One survived, and the pregnancy went full term.

According doctor Sergio Oehninger, director of the Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine at the Eastern Virginia medical school, “She has been going through treatment for a long time… She was a patient here in 2000. She was a persistent lady.” Dr Oehninger has carried out research showing that the length of time embryos are frozen does not hinder their ability to grow into healthy babies. Earlier there has been a 13 year frozen period but this instance is the longest he said.

News of the birth was published in the US medical journal Fertility and Sterility.

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Written by

Dr. Ananya Mandal

Dr. Ananya Mandal is a doctor by profession, lecturer by vocation and a medical writer by passion. She specialized in Clinical Pharmacology after her bachelor's (MBBS). For her, health communication is not just writing complicated reviews for professionals but making medical knowledge understandable and available to the general public as well.

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