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Last Updated: Sunday, 16 January, 2005, 18:16 GMT
Romanian woman gives birth at 66
Adriana Iliescu (credit Realitatea TV)
Adriana Iliescu says she expects to live for many years yet
Romanian hospital officials say a 66-year-old woman in Bucharest has given birth to a baby girl.

Adriana Iliescu, who underwent fertility treatment for nine years before becoming pregnant, is thought to be the oldest recorded mother.

The girl was born prematurely by Caesarean section after her twin sister died in the womb, the hospital said.

Ms Iliescu told local television she had always wanted to be a mother but had been unable to conceive naturally.

A spokeswoman at the Giulesti Maternity Hospital in Bucharest said the surviving infant, named Eliza Maria, weighed just 1.4kg (3lb) and was still in intensive care, but breathing normally.

"The mother is doing well. She is saying she has been given a new lease of life," the spokeswoman said, according to the Associated Press news agency.

Faith

Ms Iliescu, a retired university professor and author of children's books, was interviewed by Realitatea TV last month.

She told the station she was optimistic about her future as a mother, claiming her family had a history of longevity.

Baby Eliza Maria in hospital in Bucharest
Baby Eliza Maria was born prematurely by Caesarean section

The BBC's Central Europe reporter, Nick Thorpe, says the doctor who artificially inseminated Mrs Iliescu with the sperm of an anonymous donator justified the procedure by saying Ms Iliescu was in an appropriate condition to give birth.

Dr Bogdan Marinescu also said he had been impressed by her faith in God.

In 2003, a 65-year-old Indian woman gave birth to a boy.

Schoolteacher Satyabhama Mahapatra from Nayagarh in Orissa had been impregnated with an egg from her 26-year-old niece that had been fertilised by her husband.

It was the first child for Ms Mahapatra and her husband, who had been married for 50 years.




BBC NEWS: VIDEO AND AUDIO
World's oldest mum enjoying new lease of life



SEE ALSO:
64-year-old woman delivers baby
23 Feb 04 |  Health
Twins for surrogate grandmother
30 Jan 04 |  Health


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