A 72-year-old woman in India has given birth to a baby boy with her 79-year-old husband, after 46 years of marriage during which they were unable to conceive.
Some 20 years after her menopause, Daljinder Kaur gave birth on April 19 after using the in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) technique, whereby an egg is fertilized by sperm outside the womb in a test tube.
Having reached the later stages of their lives, Kaur and her husband Mohinder Singh Gill had lost almost all hope of ever having a child, which Gill told the Hindustan Times was “embarrassing” for the couple.
The couple noticed an advert for IVF in a local newspaper and decided to approach the National Fertility and Test Tube Baby Centre in the city of Hisar in 2013 to see if they would be suitable candidates.
“Our track record in handling IVF in older women has been fairly good, but not everyone is fit to conceive,” Dr Anurag Bishnoi, embryologist and owner of the centre, told the newspaper.
“In her case, she looked visibly frail too, so I had to refer her to a cardiologist to get clearance for the procedure and a battery of other tests to ascertain fitness levels,” he added.
While Kaur was deemed fit enough for the procedure, Bishnoi says there were some obvious causes that should have been detected earlier that may have helped Kaur conceive sooner.
“Her fallopian tubes were blocked and no attempt was made to detect the cause when she was menstruating. The procedure could have worked better then had efforts been made,” Bishnoi explained.
The couple tried to conceive through IVF twice between 2013 and 2014 but both attempts failed with a third attempt in July 2015 proving successful.
Gill blamed a lack of awareness of such treatments as well as a family feud which left them “busy with litigation” for not seeing a doctor sooner.
“After we got a little free a few years ago, we thought of trying for a baby,” Gill said. “The newspaper article was spotted at an opportune moment, I’d say.”
Kaur isn’t India’s first OAP mother to utilise IVF at the centre with a 70-year old giving birth to a girl there in 2006 while in 2008, a 66-year-old woman gave birth to triplets.