A 37-year-old Lancashire man got the shock of his life after a recent medical examination revealed that he has a fully functioning womb and could potentially get pregnant.
The man known as Rob (to protect his identity) seek medical attention after being worried that the blood in his urine was a sign of a bladder cancer. However, doctors surprised him with the news that he has a full set of female reproductive organs and the blood could actually be from his monthly period.
Doctors believed that Rob has a rare condition called persistent Müllerian duct syndrome (PMDS). It occurs when the body fails to produce or respond to certain hormones while developing during pregnancy. This results in men developing external male genitalia and internal female reproductive organs.
Studies reveal that most cases are diagnosed at birth or puberty, although people can discover they have intersex bodies at any age.
Rob’s real condition was revealed when he underwent an MRI scan.
“The diagnosis came as a bombshell. I’ve never seen myself as anything but an ordinary bloke who has a normal sex life,” Rob said. “I was shocked when the consultant said I had a fully functioning set of women’s reproductive organs, and I was even having periods.”
Rob started noticing blood in his urine when he was 18. However, nothing was detected despite tests and visits to his local GP.
“In hindsight I can now see I’ve been having odd symptoms for years. But when I saw doctors they always fobbed me off as if it were all in my mind,” he continued.
After his MRI scan, Rob has been referred to a specialist in Manchester for a full hysterectomy in the next few weeks. The operation will remove the uterus and could apparently trigger the menopause.
“It appears I could even potentially get pregnant. But I’ve been told by doctors I’ll be having a hysterectomy in the next few weeks. Bizarrely, that could lead to menopause,” Rob explained.
Since he has ovaries, Rob can get pregnant and carry a baby himself. However, the idea feels weird to him.“Much as I long to be a dad, even if this is possible it’s not something I could ever do – it would just feel too weird.”
He also said that despite the result, he will still continue to live as a man.
“It’s possible tests will show I’m both male and female, but I feel completely right living life as a guy. Even if tests showed that I was mostly a woman, I would still continue living as a man.”
Experts explained that about 120 babies every year are born in Britain with the same condition, but it is exceptionally rare for cases to be uncovered so late in life.
“Most people with intersex bodies are identified as babies or during puberty. It’s one in 100,000 cases. There would only be a handful of such adults in the country,” Tam Fry, of the Child Growth Foundation, – Britain’s leading charity on hormonal issues – said.