Durga History of IVF

In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a type of assisted reproductive technology (ART) that aids in artificial fertilization. This in turn results in successful pregnancy. In contrast to normal fertilization, IVF comprises of a complex series of procedures ranging from screening of eggs and sperms of couples to transfer of fertilized eggs in the mother’s womb. This discovery has been life-changing for couples who were striving to have children while facing certain fertility issues.

In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a type of assisted reproductive technology (ART) that aids in artificial fertilization. This in turn results in successful pregnancy. In contrast to normal fertilization, IVF comprises of a complex series of procedures ranging from screening of eggs and sperms of couples to transfer of fertilized eggs in the mother’s womb. This discovery has been life-changing for couples who were striving to have children while facing certain fertility issues.

Globally, the birth of IVF dates back to almost two centuries from now. Scientists were progressively working to understand how pregnancies occur and whether it can happen artificially. During this time, Dr. Sims performed a fresh intrauterine insemination by pushing the extracted semen into the mother’s uterus. It happened to give rise to a pregnancy but unfortunately, ended in miscarriage.

In 1926, the first infertility clinic was found in Massachusetts. Another significant event happened in the year 1934, when Gregory Pincus performed IVF-like research on rabbits. After 31 years, Dr. Jones worked with Dr. Edwards of England and fertilized the first human egg in vitro. Yet then a successful pregnancy and a successful child-birth was a goal to achieve.

In 1975, Drs. Edwards and Steptoe announced the first successful pregnancy created from IVF, however it ended in an ectopic pregnancy. Finally in the year 1978, the first successful live birth from IVF was announced by Drs. Edwards and Steptoe in England. Lesley Brown gave birth to her daughter, Louise Joy Brown, who was healthy in every way. 

Now, when it comes to Indian history of IVF, the history is found to be a little complicated. 

On 3 October 1978, the birth of the world’s second test-tube baby was announced by Dr. Subhas Mukherjee in Calcutta. However, Dr. Mukherjee was not credited for the same. Instead, the birth of Harsha, on 6 August 1986 was considered as the first ‘scientifically documented’ test-tube baby in India.

Mukherjee strived to get the accountancy for the work that he had done. Besides, Dr. TC Anand Kumar also made an appeal that Mukherjee should be credited for creating India’s first test-tube baby.

The government of West Bengal appointed an ‘expert committee’ to investigate the veracity of Mukherjee’s claims. Mukherjee couldn’t physically produce the baby as evidence to consolidate his claim. Due to the fear of social ostracism, the child’s parents didn’t allow Mukherjee to publicize the details of their daughter’s birth in 1978. The child was given a fictional name for the purpose of case study. Her name was ‘Durga’.

The committee hence rejected all the claims of Mukherjee made for the new-born Durga. He couldn’t make peace with this defeat and he then died out of suicide.

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About the Author.

Sharmistha Halder is a psychologist at MindTribe.in. You can learn more about her by clicking here

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Acknowledgement: All images used are open source and from Unsplash.

 

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