Conceived in 1992 and frozen as an embryo, Emma Gibson was conceived a year and a half after her mom, Tina, was born. [Editor’s note: Baby Emma isn’t pictured; the photo above is a stock photo.]
“Do you realize that I’m 25 years old? If the baby was born when it was supposed to born, we could have been best friends,” Emma’s mother, Tina Gibson, told the Knoxville, Tennessee NBC affiliate WBIR.
Gibson’s doctors say her story is pretty typical in terms of IVF: She had two embryos transferred, one of which resulted in baby Emma. The Gibsons said they were looking for an embryo that looked like them, not one that would set records — although they may have.
The clinic’s director, Jeffrey Keenan, M.D., said they couldn’t find an older embryo in their records. Since fertility clinic records are private, there’s no way of knowing for sure the ages of embryos in the U.S. that moms have carried. But baby Emma’s birth is likely close to a record.
“I think it is probably fair to say if it is not the oldest, it would be among the oldest,” said Dr. David Adamson, CEO of Arc Fertility in San Jose, California, told TODAY.
Experts estimate there are as many as 1 million frozen embryos in the U.S. The risks associated with using frozen embryos come when they’re thawed out. If they survive the process, they do just as well as fresh ones, and the time they’re frozen doesn’t make a difference in the outcome.
“I think she looks pretty perfect to have been frozen all those years ago,” Emma’s dad, Benjamin Gibson, said in a statement.