Infertile couple, can science give us a child?

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Infertile couple, can science give us a child?

Postby curiousparent on February 7th, 2015, 4:19 pm 

I have no knowledge of how this works. I hope I can have some questions answered here.

We would like to have a child, obviously. My question is, could we have my wife's genes somehow inserted in to the embryo of a surrogate mother, whatever, however its done. She has no reproductive organs and me little ones work. Is there ethical issues pertaining to something like this to?
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Re: Infertile couple, can science give us a child?

Postby Paralith on February 7th, 2015, 5:19 pm 

Hello curious parent. You will be best served by seeing a fertility doctor, who can address the specifics of your situation. But in general, it depends on exactly which reproductive organs your wife is missing. If she still has ovaries, the organs that produce eggs, and they are largely normal and still producing eggs, then there may be a way to gather some of them. If so, her eggs and your sperm can be combined to form an embryo, which can then be implanted in a surrogate mother's uterus. However, if your wife is missing her ovaries or they are not functioning normally, then it will be much more difficult to try and have a child with her DNA. The ovaries package DNA in just the right way for reproduction, and our technology has yet to be able to replicate this process completely. Without this proper packaging, the process has a much higher chance of failure or something going wrong.

This is just a guess, but I think your wife may have intact ovaries, since the ovaries are also largely responsible for controlling female reproductive hormones. If your wife was missing them or they were nonfunctional, she would probably have a lot of hormonal issues that I imagine you would have mentioned.

Again, seeing a fertility doctor will get you the most complete and accurate information.
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Re: Infertile couple, can science give us a child?

Postby BioWizard on February 10th, 2015, 11:58 am 

Hi curiousparent

When you say your wife doesn't have reproductive organs, what exactly do you mean? Because depending on that, the answer can vary wildly.
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Re: Infertile couple, can science give us a child?

Postby Darby on March 25th, 2015, 8:03 am 

Paralith pretty much covered it.

I'm familiar with the IVF process, which essentially entails your wife receiving a series of hormone injections that cause a bunch of eggs to mature and release at once (similar to swatting a bees nest with a stick), which your fertility doc monitors with sonograms and then harvests endoscopically, manually fertilizes under controlled conditions, and then re-implants ... either in your wife, or in a surrogate, depending on the biological hurdles involved.

If your wife hasnt had a hysterectomy yet, and still has her ovaries, you're still in the game, but if she he's had either removed, you'd need both an egg donor and a surrogate.

The state of the art has advanced a lot in recent decades. It used to be that your best chances of natural conception began to wane after age 29 (for women), but that IVF could extend that into the early-mid 40's. Nowadays, its not unheard of to successfully undergo IVF into the early 50's. However, let me sound a cautionary note ... the older the eggs, the greater your chances for things like down's syndrome, which is why there's an increased preference for younger eggs from a donor, when age becomes a factor. So, if you're dealing with old eggs, couples are encourage to have a frank discussion about how to handle what ifs like D.S., because if you cant reach agreement beforehand, you shouldnt do IVF, because if your fears become reality it can and likely will end your marriage.

Do some online reading on all this in order to assemble a list of all your relevant medical concerns and questions, and then talk to a fertility specialist.
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