New Wombs for Old: Transplant, Anybody?

Part of me ghoulishly imagines that little indicator on my driver’s license that lets folks know I’m an organ donor. Who knew that a particular organ of mine might help another woman conceive?? And then I think of how morbid I’m being, thinking about such things… if I die, at least my womb could create new life.

But it’s true. MSNBC (Womb transplants could become a reality)reports that the uterus is a transplantable organ, with this caveat:

The researchers point out that the transplant of organs that are not needed to preserve life raises ethical issues. Thus far, the only human uterine transplant that has been performed was “controversial and unsuccessful.”

Well, here’s one for ethicists everywhere: is the promotion of human life as important as preserving it? The potential for life versus preserving it. Ponder.

A BBC News article from 2002 paints a dangerous, dark story that raised hackles and objections from experts, one of whom (Lord Winston) who went so far as to call the transplanted organ ‘a rotting piece of meat.

A dark part of my mind wonders if hysterectomies as sterilization would develop a side market in organ donation?

brave new world, indeed.


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