A technique for transplantation of ovarian cortical strips to the forearm

Kutluk Oktay, Erkan Buyuk, Zev Rosenwaks, James Rucinski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

89 Scopus citations


Objective: To describe a forearm heterotopic ovarian transplantation technique. Design: Case study. Setting: Academic medical center. Patient(s): One patient with stage IIIB squamous cell cervical carcinoma and one patient with recurrent benign ovarian cysts. Intervention(s): Preparation of thin ovarian cortical slices and transplantation under the skin of the forearm. Main Outcome Measure(s): Follicular development and oocyte retrieval; cyclical estradiol (E2) and progesterone (P4) production; restoration of serum follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) levels to reproductive age range. Result(s): Both patients were menopausal immediately after oophorectomy. The first patient developed a dominant follicle 10 weeks after transplantation, and her gonadotropin levels decreased to nonmenopausal levels. Percutaneous aspiration of ovarian follicles yielded a metaphase I (M-I) oocyte that was matured to metaphase II (M-II). The first patient's graft was functional for at least 21 months. In the second patient, ovarian follicle development was detected 6 months after transplantation, and periodic menstruation occurred thereafter. Spontaneous ovulation was confirmed by a midluteal increase in her P4 levels. Menstruation and follicle development continued for more than 2 years after the transplant. Conclusion(s): Heterotopic transplantation of ovarian tissue to the forearm is a simple and promising technique to restore ovarian function in women who become menopausal due to chemotherapy, surgery, or radiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)193-198
Number of pages6
JournalFertility and sterility
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer
  • Fertility preservation
  • Forearm
  • Heterotopic
  • Ovarian transplant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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