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Canada mom freezes eggs so daughter can have child

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Monday, April 23, 2007 | 0 comments

TORONTO (Reuters) - A Montreal woman has frozen her eggs so they can be used by her seven-year-old daughter, who cannot have children because of a genetic condition.

Doctors at McGill University Reproductive Centre in Montreal, which has pioneered a freezing program for cancer patients and those who want to delay childbearing, say the decision by 36-year-old Melanie Boivin is unprecedented in North America and raises ethical questions.

If the girl chooses to become pregnant using her mother's eggs, she will be giving birth to her biological half-sister. Boivin will then become a mother and a grandmother.

"She is donating her eggs to help her daughter to have children. It's mother's love," Seang Lin Tan, director of the McGill Reproductive Centre and a prominent expert on infertility treatments, said in an interview on Wednesday night.

"It's like donating a kidney to your own child, nobody will have problem with that," he said.

While there are about 60 cases of women freezing their eggs in North America, mother-to-daughter donation is the first, Tan said. The case has been reviewed and endorsed by the ethical committee of the McGill University Health Centre, he said.

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About Catherine: I am mom to three grown sons, two grandchildren and two rescue dogs. After years of raising my boys as a single mom, I remarried a wonderful man who had never had a child of his own. Unexpectedly, I found myself pregnant at 49!
Sadly we lost that precious baby at 8 weeks, and decided to try again. Five more losses, turned down for donor egg, foster care and adoption due to my age and losses - we have accepted that there will be no more babies in our house.

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