Most women feel that having a child in their 40s constitutes having a baby ‘later in life’.
But according to a recent report on cbsnews.com Daljinder Kaur of India has turned this idea on its head, by giving birth to a healthy baby boy at over 70 years of age, way beyond the normal limit.
The impossible was made possible through fertility treatments Kaur received at a clinic in India owned by embryologist, Dr. Anurag Bishnoi. According to CBS News, Kaur came to see the clinic to weigh the possibilities of conceiving and bearing a child after reading about the scientific methods they offered, in a newspaper.
And it was a good thing she took the risk because that first visit proved to be the beginning of an amazing journey.
CBSnews.com reports that Kaur tried to be impregnated through in vitro fertilization twice but failed. On the third go, finally things worked, and now she and her husband of over 50 years, 79-year old Mohinder Singh Gill, are proud parents for the first time in their lives.
So, is pregnancy and giving birth something that any woman could do at any age? Who knows. Experts have commented that it’s amazing Kaur’s pregnancy and birth were successful, given the strain that the process places on a woman’s body.
Since there is no large pool of women giving birth in their 70s, hard data on the risks of giving birth at that age is hard to come by, but some general facts are certain.
Dr. Ruth M. Farrell, a bioethicist in the department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Cleveland Clinic, commented to CBS News on the issue saying,
“Data shows that as maternal age increases, so do the risk of health complications for the pregnant woman,” Farrell. “Complications associated with blood pressure, blood sugars, other things that can affect the mother’s health.”
Other risks, like preeclampsia, which affects the mother and can damage the baby as well, increases with age.
But in this happy couple’s case, thankfully none of this was a worry.
But is Kaur alone in her achievement? How old is the oldest woman to conceive naturally?
Apparently she is much younger than 72, but still impressively past normal menopause age. According to the Guinness World Records, Dawn Brooke of the United Kingdom conceived at 59 years of age in 1997 while taking estrogen, and gave birth to a baby boy via Caesarian section.
Unlike Daljinder Kaur and Mohinder Singh Gill, Brooke’s child came about by accident, as she ovulated past her final period.
Naturally conceived or not, the newborn wonder infant, named Arman, aptly meaning ‘wish’ in Hindi, is seemingly very welcomed. Some are still concerned though that his parents, given their age, may pass away before Arman reaches adulthood.
“People say what will happen to the child once we die,” Mohinder Singh Gill is quoted as saying. “But I have full faith in God. God is omnipotent and omnipresent, he will take care of everything,” he told the AFP news agency.
After such a miracle of science, one can understand why Singh Gill has a such a solid faith in the future.