Handover of fertilized egg cells to widow

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Dispute over egg cells: handover of the fertilized cells to the widow. After the dispute between a widow and the Neubrandenburg Clinic over the fertilized egg cells of the woman had reached the Rostock Higher Regional Court, where the woman was right in May 2010, the case has now ended rather unspectacularly: The widow got her Eggs and wanted to be fertilized with them immediately afterwards.

Egg cells frozen even before the man's death The then 29-year-old Ines S. and her husband from the Uecker-Randow district in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania had already prepared for artificial insemination in 2008 and had nine egg cells fertilized with sperm frozen and stored. Shortly afterwards, Ines S.'s husband had a fatal accident, whereupon the widow demanded that the fertilized eggs from the Dietrich-Bonhoeffer Clinic in Neubrandenburg, which had been stored in liquid nitrogen at minus 190 degrees Celsius since March 2008, be released in order to undergo artificial insemination . However, the doctors refused because the embryo protection law prohibits the fertilization of egg cells with the semen of a deceased man.

The fertilization process began while the man was still alive. In order to fulfill her desire to have children, Ines S. first complained to the district court in Neubrandenburg, which still rejected the widow's complaint, and then to the Rostock Higher Regional Court, where the judges ruled in May this year that her fertilized eggs are to be handed over. Because the sperm had an "intimate connection" with the egg cell during the man's lifetime, so that the fertilization process had started before the man's death and the freezing only represents an interruption of the process, according to the judgment of the Higher Regional Court. However, the chance of successful fertilization with the egg cells is only around 20 percent.

Handing over the egg cells in 30 minutes The 30-year-old woman picked up her egg cells five months after the verdict last Friday and wanted to go straight to a clinic in Szczecin, Poland, immediately after artificial insemination. The transfer of the egg cells was rather unspectacular compared to the previous discussion. The doctors gave the widow the container with the nine frozen, fertilized eggs and Professor Roland Sudik, chief physician of the clinic for gynecology and obstetrics at the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Clinic, said goodbye to Ines S after about 30 minutes: “I wish you All the best. ”Live on the private broadcaster, to which Ines S. had granted the exclusive rights to broadcast.

Precedent requires action by the legislator The judgment of the Rostock Higher Regional Court is, however, to be seen as a precedent and the judges also see the legislator as being asked to deal with the question again. Most doctors and other experts agree with the current verdict and the Göttingen professor of ethics and history of medicine, Claudia Wiesemann, praised that the judges followed the moral intuition of people and not an elaborate interpretation of the text. Emil Reisinger, head of the Rostock Medical Faculty, also sees the judgment positively and declares it to be a reasonable individual case decision. (fp, 10/02/2010)

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