I like to keep my finger on the pulse of the latest developments and trends in the field of reproductive medicine and assisted reproduction. Here are a few things that have come across my desk that I think everyone should take note of.
First, much noise is being made about the fact that biological men who identify as women want uterine transplants in order to more fully experience being a woman. Think menstruation and pregnancy. This is an expansion of the “men having babies” movement, where gay couples buy eggs and rent wombs from women in order to have babies that are genetically connected to one of the men. These transgender people make no mention of wanting to experience menopause—but I digress.
Last year, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published a study, the largest of its kind, titled “Perceptions and Motivations for Uterus Transplant in Transgender Women.” Surveying 182 transgender people, the researchers found that 90 percent wanted uterine transplants to improve their “quality of life,” help mitigate their gender dysphoria symptoms, and enhance their feelings of femininity.
Another study, published in June 2021, shows how researchers were able to implant uteruses into castrated male rats. They first had to connect the male rat’s circulatory system to that of a female rat. Both rats then had embryos implanted into their respective uteruses. Most of the pups carried by the male rats died within hours of delivery by C-section.
Fast forward to this news headline: “Indian Surgeon Planning Womb Implant into Trans-Identified Male.” New Delhi physician Dr. Narendra Kaushik has fifteen years of experience working with transgender patients. He states that he is developing plans to perform what may be the first uterine transplant into a man. He will attempt this transplant using a uterus taken from either an organ donor or from a woman who had a hysterectomy. Dr. Richard Paulson, former president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, claims that it is “possible for biological males to get pregnant with currently-available medical technology.”
Will uterine transplants into men be successful? If I had to make a prediction, I would say that it is highly doubtful. We already know that experimental uterine transplants have presented mixed results for women. Whatever the case may be, it is clear that transplanting uteruses into male bodies is well outside the domain of ethical medical practice.
Further developments are happening at the legislative level. First, there is good news: Colorado has become the first state to ban anonymous sperm and egg donation. Gov. Jared Polis signed the legislation, which also requires agencies to maintain current and accurate records of donors. The minimum age for egg and sperm donors is now twenty-one, and the number of donations an individual can make has been limited in order to prevent a situation where hundreds of children are produced by a single donor. Legislation like this will do a lot of good curbing what I call Big Fertility.
Imagine discovering that you are not your mother and father’s biological child and are, in fact, one of ninety-four children—and counting—linked to a single fertility doctor. The Netflix documentary “Our Father” details how Dr. Donald Cline, the “go to” fertility doctor in the Indianapolis area, inseminated dozens of women with his own sperm, without their knowledge. He has since been made to pay $1.3 million in civil case settlements.
Finally, as I live in California, I feel compelled to draw attention to the Gender Affirming Health Care bill, which aims to make the state a sanctuary for children with gender dysphoria. This includes out-of-state children seeking “affirmative therapy” that has been banned in their own state. If passed, this law would allow out-of-state laws not to be enforced. California would no longer have to cooperate with other states that have banned or restricted minors from accessing medical or surgical gender transition therapies.
Wesley Smith predicts that “California will become a transgender sanctuary state, with a law that encourages transgender children to be brought to California to escape court rulings and laws of other jurisdictions when they go against transgender ideology.”
We are witnessing the total corruption of medicine. Medical procedures that would have been unconscionable fifty years ago are happening all around us. One can only hope that, fifty years from now, with all the harm done to our bodies and our children, people will look back and say, “My God, what were they thinking?”
Jennifer Lahl is founder and president of the Center for Bioethics and a founding member of the International StopSurrogacyNow Campaign.
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Photo by Austin Samaritans via Creative Commons. Image cropped.