Psychiatrist becomes Britain's oldest mother at 62

LONDON - A 62-year-old child psychiatrist has become the country's oldest mother after undergoing fertility treatment abroad, a newspaper reported today.

The Daily Mail said that Patti Farrant, a mother to three grown-up children from a previous marriage, gave birth to a boy by caesarean on Wednesday.

It said the baby, who weighed in at 6 pounds 10-1/2 ounces (about 3 kg), was born at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton, southern England, although hospital officials could not immediately confirm the news.

Farrant, known professionally as Patricia Rashbrook, becomes the country's oldest mother and one of the oldest in the world.

"He is adorable and seeing him for the first time was beyond words," Farrant said in an interview with the Daily Mail.

Farrant gave birth to the baby, nicknamed "JJ", after having in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment overseas using a donated egg so she could fulfil her 60-year-old husband John's dream of becoming a father, the newspaper said.

Her pregnancy caused a media sensation in May when it was first reported.

Farrant received IVF treatment under the supervision of Italian doctor Severino Antinori, the Daily Mail said.

Antinori told Reuters in May that he had given IVF treatment last October to an English woman, but did not name Farrant.

Antinori shot to fame in the early 1990s when he helped a 62-year-old Italian woman give birth using fertility treatment with a donated egg.

Italy has since introduced some of Europe's most restrictive laws on assisted reproduction and Antinori said he had carried out the procedure this time in an unnamed former Soviet republic.

Most fertility clinics in the country will not provide treatment for women past the normal age for childbirth.

In 1997, Welsh woman Liz Buttle became Britain's oldest mother at the age of 60.

Last year, a 66-year-old Romanian, Adriana Iliescu, became the world's oldest mother when she gave birth to a baby girl after IVF treatment.

- REUTERS

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