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Tue, Jan 06
The high-tech future of the uterus
When I suffered my third consecutive miscarriage this past May, my mom said she wanted to help me out however she could, even if it meant being my surrogate. I laughed it off—a 60-year-old surrogate?—but it turned out that, as always, Mom had been on to something.
In 2011, Kristine Casey, 61, gave birth to her own grandchild after being surrogate for her daughter, Sara, who had delivered stillborn twins and then suffered a miscarriage after years of infertility treatment. Surrogacy isn’t typically allowed in post-menopausal women because of the need for hormone supplements and the associated health risks—but occasionally, doctors make exceptions, especially for relatives, and Casey is the oldest of an increasingly large roster of women who have birthed their own grandchildren. And in just the past year, post-menopausal surrogacy has become a seemingly mundane mode of reproduction when compared to the new frontier of infertility solutions: living donor-uterus transplants and bioengineered wombs.