In vitro fertilization (IVF) has become increasingly popular in the United States over the past decade and now the technology is evolving. IVF is no longer only for mothers having trouble conceiving. Now it has an exciting new benefit.
NBC reports on a mother who used IVF to deter her babies from having a rare genetic disorder.
The woman has a genetic mutation that if passed on to her children would cause them to have a rare brain disorder; but thanks to IVF all of her babies were born perfectly healthy.
“A Tennessee woman with a fatal inherited disorder has three disease-free children — toddler twins and a 9-month-old — thanks to the new use of a growing procedure that lets parents pick healthy babies in a Petri dish. She learned four years ago that she had a rare genetic mutation that causes Gertsmann-Straussler-Scheinker Disease, or GSS, a rare neurodegenerative condition that causes symptoms that start in mid-life and inevitably kills its victims,” according to NBC.
The couple searched for a way to have their babies in a healthy manner.
NBC explains, “Doctors told them about preimplantation genetic diagnosis, or PGD, a genetic screening technique used with in vitro fertilization, or IVF, to choose only healthy embryos to implant in a woman’s uterus. Using the procedure, which can total $20,000, they became parents of Ava and Cole, their 3-year-old twins, followed by Tatum, 9 1/2 months.”
The mother issued a statement saying, ““I wanted to have them quickly and early so that they can have their mom as long as possible and I can have my children as long as possible. We are planning on most likely we will have a fourth child and then see what happens.” Doctors are urging more parents to consider PGD if they have genetic mutations that could adversely affect their children.