Everything Pregnancy

Disappointing Turn for First U.S. Uterus Transplant Recipient

A complication caused the first American woman who received a uterus transplant to have the organ removed.

uterus-transplant-fails.png ABC News
The first woman in the U.S. to receive a donor uterus had to have it removed after the transplant failed.

The 26-year-old woman, known only as Lindsey, received the womb in a procedure performed on February 24 that took nine hours, and which initially seemed to be successful.

"We are saddened to share that our patient, Lindsey, recently experienced a sudden complication that led to the removal of her transplanted uterus," the Cleveland Clinic said in a statement. They added there is a risk that a transplanted organ may need to be removed if complications arise, and that doctors are looking into what caused Lindsey's complications.

In the meantime, the mom to three adopted boys is doing well and recovering. "I just wanted to take a moment to express my gratitude towards all of my doctors," she said in a statement. "Unfortunately, I did lose the uterus to complications. However, I am doing okay and appreciate all of your prayers and good thoughts."

Lindsey is part of a research study announced by the clinic back in November, in which 10 women who were born without a uterus or who have uterine factor infertility will receive transplants. While her procedure was the first of it's kind in the U.S., there have been successful uterus transplants in Sweden.

"I was 16 and was told I would never have children," Lindsey said just a few days ago, before she knew her transplant had failed. "And from that moment on, I've prayed that God would allow me that opportunity to experience pregnancy. And here we are today at the beginning of that journey."

Sadly, Lindsey's journey would prove to be a short one. The study, however, remains ongoing.

Hollee Actman Becker is a freelance writer, blogger, and a mom. Check out her website holleeactmanbecker.com for more, and follow her on Twitter at @holleewoodworld.