Four Women Implanted with Lab-Grown Vagina

Four women in the US have been implanted with new vaginas after they suffered from rare condition called Mayer-Rokitansky-Kuster-Hauser (MRKH) syndrome. The syndrome impacts nearly one in 5000 women worldwide and causes either underdeveloped uterus and vagina or no vagina at all. The surgery was carried out four times between June 2005 and October 2008 by the American and Mexican doctors.

All four women have reported normal levels of desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm, satisfaction and painless intercourse. The study, published in the Lancet, has once again proved the power of regenerative medicine.

All the women suffered from a condition that did not allow proper formation of the vagina while they were still inside their mother's womb. Presently, the treatments that are available for the condition involve surgical creation of a cavity, which is lined with skin grafts or parts of the intestine.

Doctors at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Centre in North Carolina grew vaginas for the four women who were in their teenage years at the time of the surgery. The doctor used the scans of the pelvic region to design a tube like 3D-scaffold for each patient. They first took a small tissue biopsy from the poorly developed vulva and grown to build a large batch of cells in the lab.

The researchers made sure that the vaginas were grown carefully in a bioreactor till the time they were suitable enough to be surgically implanted in the four patients.

One of the women who had the surgery performed on her said, "I believe in the beginning when you find out you feel different. I mean while you are living the process, you are seeing the possibilities you have and all the changes you'll go through". She added that she is really fortunate to have a normal life now. All the women said that they had no problem while having sex, instead they enjoyed the intercourse as they never did before.