Menopause is a point of no return for women, considered irreversible until recently. Earlier in 2016, a team of experts was able to find a way to rejuvenate post-menopausal ovaries. After months of preclinical trials, experts from the Genesis Health Clinic in Athens are now launching the first clinical trials for the method.
The technique uses Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections. But unlike other PRP transfusions, this one needs no donor. This PRP is made by centrifuging a person’s blood sample to isolate its growth factors. “It offers a window of hope that menopausal women will be able to get pregnant using their own genetic material,” Konstantinos Sfakianoudis, a gynecologist at Genesis, said.
The preclinical trials began in May 2016 and have yielded considerable results. PRP rejuvenated menopausal women’s ovaries, restoring fertility. Several were able to conceive after receiving PRP treatment. 75% of the 60 women treated became capable of conceiving through natural pregnancy or in vitro fertilization, and 9 actually got pregnant.
More than 75% showed overall hormone levels returned to youthful levels. It made women young again, so to speak.
Changing lifestyles have led to an increase in late pregnancies, and this comes with the usual complications associated with menopausal conception. Aside from this, there are also cases of women with difficulties in bearing children because of thin uterine lining. But after injecting PRP into the uterus of six women who had these conditions, they were able to bear children.
So this method doesn’t just restore a woman’s fertility, it can also alleviate some of the (many) negative effects associated with menopause. Aaron Traywick, Inovium Ovarian Rejuvenation Trials Managing Director, explained:
“The goal of the trial is not to prove that we can reverse menopause, because over and over again in our treatments, we know that this is the result. We also know that the treatment triggers a whole body response that restores hormones to the levels of youth. Now, we want to see if the rejuvenation is a permanent one, and if we have discovered a connection between the loss of fertility and the damaging effects of aging in the body.”
Pre-enrollment for the trials will begin in February, 2017, and will be held in accordance with the FDA’s E6 Good Management Practices for clinical trials research. It isn’t free, however. Participation costs a hefty sum of $5,000. Similar trials are set to begin in multiple locations in the US by June 2017.