World's First Test Tube Baby Visits Chicago Before Turning 40

Steve Miller
June 06, 2018 - 2:49 pm

WBBM Newsradio/Steve Miller

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The world's first test tube baby is turning 40 this summer, and she is in Chicago Wednesday at the Midwest Reproductive Symposium International.

Louise Brown is her name. She is from Bristol, England. Her parents had been trying to have a child for nine years. Finally -- through the first successful In Vitro Fertilization -- Louise was born in 1978.

On her right arm, she has a tattoo that says "Mum" and "Dad."

"Brave people," Brown said. "Just doing the unknown. It was something, and I think that proves how desperate my mum was. She did a 400-mile round trip to receive the treatment."

Brown's trip to Chicago coincided with the death of her mother.

"Six years ago today. My dad passed away in December of 2006 - two weeks before I had my first son," she said. "They'd both be amazed to see how far in 40 years it's come and the different treatments available - and just everything."

A local fertility expert, Dr. Angie Beltsos, said Louise is "like Michael Jordan."

"How cool is Louise Brown?" Beltsos said.

Brown says she is happy to be known as the first successful In Vitro Fertilization case.

"It's kind of weird," she said. "I don't think about it so much now, but when I was younger, like 14 or 15, I used to think when I'm dead and gone, my name will be remembered, and I find that just really odd because to me, I'm just a normal girl from Bristol."

WBBM Newsradio/Steve Miller