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Post-menopausal pregnancy causes controversy in Brazil

September 26, 2011

A 61-year-old Brazilian woman is preparing to give birth in November, and her pregnancy has been the cause of much controversy. The woman, who has chosen to remain anonymous, and her 38-year-old husband wanted children and so she had a doctor implant her with a donor egg, according to the AFP.

"I had already gone through menopause...My husband wanted to be a father, I wanted to be a mother too," she told the news source. "I am in great health...and I have undergone a very thorough medical clearance."

The main issue that many have with late-life pregnancy is the additional health risks that mother and child face. When an older woman has a child, the strain put on the body can be much more detrimental than for a younger mother, which also increases the risk of complications for the child.

In 2002, researchers at the University of Southern California found that there are no medical reasons that healthy post-menopausal women cannot give birth, according to The Canadian Press. However, many oppose the idea because their age could mean that older new mothers may not live to see their children grow up.

People can make calls to Brazil with phone cards to talk to their friends about the pregnant 61-year-old and the ethical implications of her pregnancy.

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