It has been said that you’re never too old to learn something new. Well, what about being too old to do something young, like have a baby? I’m sure most people have heard of the Biblical story of Abraham’s wife Sarah who became pregnant and gave birth after her menopausal years – could you be like her? According to the latest research and scientific success stories, women who have gone through early menopause are now eligible to get pregnant anyway.
There are some unusual cases where some women go through menopause sooner than normal, as early as before they turn 30 years old. One Japanese woman who experienced just this has recently found herself pregnant after she thought all hope was lost. Early menopausal women are not the only candidates, however, for this ground-breaking new science. Apparently women who have undergone chemotherapy which has left them infertile as well as 40-45 year old women who have experienced irregular menstrual cycles could also foresee pregnancy in their future.
The Japanese woman who has already found success was the first to undergo treatment. This procedure is called In Vetro Activation (IVA). It’s a little crazy because the infertile ovaries are removed in a surgery, stimulated with drugs and then put back into the woman. What happened with the Japanese woman was that after the IVA surgery she wound up with 6 fertile eggs. They took the fertile eggs and mixed them with some of her husbands sperm and were able to come up with four fertilized embryos. Two of these were implanted into her and one survived, the one which became her baby boy born last December.
The details of this remarkable study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. As amazing as the science is, it also raises the question as to whether a woman’s body, who seems to be experiencing menopause, is really locked into the end results we so often associate with such a life transition? If the body is still capable of producing pregnancy hormones and bringing a baby to term even after it supposedly went through menopause, doesn’t this change the way we think about and look at menopause?
Could more women be like the Biblical Sarah and give birth after menopause? Could this study open the doors of perception into how we see women’s bodies in their later years and what could be possible for them? It seems that this study points to only the proper equipment being present – the fertilizable eggs- and then nature takes care of the rest. True, it may not be the case for all women, or all menopausal women that pregnancy is possible, but it does open the door a crack.
So many women fear the day they know they will no longer be able to have children, many dreading the decision they made not have babies. On the other hand, there are plenty of women who rejoice in knowing they no longer need worry about pregnancy being an option and something to consider when having intercourse. In whatever the case and whoever the woman, this study which shows post-menopausal women able to conceive, is indeed beyond the scope of what we have considered normal and natural. It is a scientific revolution and a breakthrough in the way age is perceived.
Could you be like the Biblical Sarah and give birth after menopause? Perhaps. Maybe this is just one of those stories that helps to expand the paradigm of what we all believe to be possible until we can embrace that truly, anything is.
Written by: Stasia Bliss