Endometrial autotransplantation: an innovation in the treatment of infertility and an alternative to surrogacy
A lot of childless couples, after long-term treatment of infertility and unsuccessful IVF (in vitro fertilization) come to the conclusion that surrogacy is their only chance to give birth to the long-awaited first-born.
However, thanks to endometrial autotransplantation, a new innovative method, women with Asherman syndrome can bear and give birth to a healthy baby on their own. This technology has become an alternative to surrogacy.
What is the peculiarity of this method and in what cases is endometrial autotransplantation recommended? In Asherman syndrome, adhesions form in the woman’s uterus, which causes a decrease in the quality of endometrial tissue. In most cases, the formation of adhesions in the uterus is caused by curettage of the mucosa of the organ:
- in event of abortions
- intrauterine surgery (for example, due to an infectious disease)
- in case of delayed umbilical cord detachment after delivery, etc.
As a result, the main functions are impaired: the ability to conceive and bear a child, since it is the upper layer of the endometrium, which matures and “dies” every month, that is intended for implantation of the embryo and its further development in the uterus. If conception does not occur, then the woman starts menstruating: the spotting is the exfoliating endometrial layer.
As a rule, patients with Asherman syndrome have menstrual disorders: from a decrease in menstrual flow to amenorrhea – the complete stoppage of menstruation As a consequence, they cannot become pregnant at all. However, the basal, that is, the lower layer of the endometrium, does not die off – it is a permanent tissue on which a healthy endometrium grown in vitro from a woman’s own tissue can be “planted”.
The procedure of autotransplantation, which is used in the treatment of infertility at the Biotexcom reproductive clinic, is painless: using an endoscope, the doctor finds an intact piece of endometrium in the patient’s uterus, even if it is microscopically small. The received material is placed in a Petri dish, where a fully-fledged endometrium is cultivated. After that, the liquid with cells grown in such an incubator is transplanted into the uterine cavity of the patient. Sometimes, to achieve a result, several transfers are necessary. But now for women with Asherman syndrome, infertility of which was a direct indication for surrogacy, there is an opportunity to become a mother by themselves!