The Compass Summer 2022 | Page 3


Mother ’ s Day Miracles

Transplant recipient Madison Gibbs and her daughter meet donor Janice Bage for the first time .

Uterus transplant reunion celebrates mothers and babies on Mother ’ s Day weekend at the Dallas Arboretum .

other ’ s Day was more special than usual for the women who have gone through the uterus transplant program at Baylor University Medical Center . On May 7 , BUMC hosted a reunion at the Dallas Arboretum for the 20 women who received a uterus transplant , the 15 babies born through the program so far and their families . Also in attendance were members of the uterus transplant team and 16 living donors , many of whom met their recipients for the first time , like donor Janice Bage and recipient Madison Gibbs .
When she was just a teenager , Madison was diagnosed with Mayer-Rokitansky- Küster-Hauser , a syndrome that results in a woman being born without a uterus or having an underdeveloped uterus . Janice , a mother of two , had already served as a surrogate twice and saw this program as another way to continue providing hope for women with dreams of motherhood but facing infertility . The two met for the first time at the reunion .
“ I walked up to her and I just started crying . I could not tell her ‘ thank you ’ enough times to be able to do this ,” Madison , now a mother of two herself , said . “ I ’ m so , so thankful for her .”
The reunion highlighted the courage and determination of these women who fight so valiantly to become mothers against incredible odds . Liza Johannesson , MD , PhD , gynecologic surgeon and medical director of uterus transplantation at BUMC , reminded us of this when she recalled a letter written by one of the donors to her recipient , sharing her words : In my eyes you were already a mother even before you were pregnant , because mothers fight for their children .
“ I am amazed by all the women here today . I ’ ve never seen such hope , courage and selflessness as I have witnessed over the past six years . Despite so many years of doing this job , I never imagined I could have such a deep and emotional fulfillment from this profession as I have had working with you ,” said Giuliano Testa , MD , chief of abdominal transplant at BUMC .
In 2016 , philanthropic support helped

“ In my 30 years in healthcare , this is one of the most astonishing miracles we have ever been a part of .”

– Steve Newton
Chief Growth Officer , Baylor Scott & White
launch this program , which started as a landmark clinical trial in collaboration with Baylor Scott & White Research Institute . Now , the BUMC uterus transplant program is the first commercial program in the United States and has done more transplants and delivered more babies than any program in the world . The oldest baby born through the program is 4½ years old , and the youngest was born shortly before the reunion .
“ In my 30 years in healthcare , this is one of the most astonishing miracles we have ever been a part of ,” said Steve Newton , chief growth officer , Baylor Scott & White . “ Our team has a restless spirit always looking for new ways to solve long-term , challenging problems . They arrived with this after watching early efforts around the world . They stepped up and said , ‘ We think we can do this . We think we have the talent , and we ’ ve got the research base . We ’ ve got the
commitment to make this possible .’”
Donors , recipients and uterus transplant team