Chinese mother, 46, who has always longed for a second child gives birth using an embryo frozen 16 years ago – after she is allowed by the government to have another baby
The 46-year-old gave birth to a baby boy, her second child, this month
She was told she was infertile in 2000 and chose to freeze her embryos
She gave birth to one child and then waited for the one-child policy to end
After it ended in 2016, the woman had another embryo implanted
A 46-year-old mother in China who longed for a second child has given birth using an embryo frozen 16 years ago.
When Ms Luo was 29, she decided to freeze 18 of her embryos in the hope that a two-child policy would be introduced in the future, reports the People’s Daily Online.
Following the implementation of the two-child rule at the beginning of 2016, Ms Luo had the embryo implanted, giving birth just a few days ago in China’s Guangdong province.
The woman who chose to go under the name of Ms Luo was declared to be infertile by her doctor at Zhongshan University First Affiliated Hospital.
The hospital has been offering fertility treatment and the option to freeze embryos since 1994.
In 2000, she managed to give birth to her first child through IVF treatment. She also asked the hospital to freeze her remaining 18 embryos.
Professor Xu Yanwen told reporters: ‘The patient developed infertility due to poly-cystic ovary syndrome and gave birth to a son by means of assisted reproductive technology in 2000 before freezing the rest of the embryo.’
Ms Luo was still desperate to have a second child however due to China’s one-child policy she was unable to. She hoped that in the future the policy would change.
In 2016, the Chinese government announced that it would be allowing people to have a second child.
She went back to the hospital in May last year to have another embryo implanted and gave birth to the child just a few days ago. The baby boy weighed eight pounds.
Wang Zilian, a doctor at the hospital said that the woman’s age was a challenge: ‘At 50 years old, the embryo survival rate is low, less than five percent.’
A spokesperson from the hospital said: ‘We have been storing embryos for patients since 1994.
‘This is recently the second case of «thawed embryos» and so far the oldest. Last year we also thawed an embryo for nearly 16 years.’
WHAT IS ONE-CHILD POLICY AND WHY DID CHINA HAVE IT
In the 1950s after the Communist Party of China took over the country, Mao Zedong, the first Chairman of People’s Republic of China, believed in the phrase ‘there is strength in numbers’.
The powerful leader encouraged post-war Chinese women to give birth to more children. He awarded those who have more than five offspring the shining title of a ‘glorious mother’.
As a result, between 1950 and 1960, approximately 200 million people were born in China, more than a third of the nation’s population in its founding year 1949 (542 million).
In order to control the quickly expanding population, the State Council of China unveiled a revolutionary family-planning guideline in 1973, encouraging couples to have a maximum of two children, with a four-year gap between the pair.
A decade later, a mandatory one-child policy was launched with the aim of keeping the Chinese population under 1.2 billion at the end of the 20th century.
The ruthless policy was strictly enforced in urban areas.
If a woman was pregnant with her second child, she would be asked to abort it.
If the couple decided to keep it, a fine would be applied – usually three times the family’s annual income.
Selective demographics in the country, such as rural residents and minority groups, however, were not bound by the policy.
On January 1, 2014, the Chinese authorities launched a so-called ‘selective two-child policy’, which allowed couples to have a second baby as long as either of them is a single child.
China officially started its so-called ‘universal two-child policy’ on January 1, 2016, allowing all couples to have two children.
The moves were thought to be made in a bid to deal with the country’s aging population.