(JTA) — A 65-year-old haredi Orthodox woman became the oldest woman ever to birth a child in Israel and one of the oldest in the world.
Chaya Sarah Schachar of Bnei Brak delivered her first child, a healthy boy, on May 18 at the Meir Hospital in Kfar Saba, The Jerusalem Post reported.
Schachar, who is Hasidic, had been trying to get pregnant since marrying over 45 years ago. The baby, delivered by Caesarean section, was conceived with donated or purchased sperm.
Schachar and her husband, Shmuel, attributed her successful pregnancy to a blessing from their rabbi, according to the Times of Israel.
Last year, a 61-year-old woman gave birth to her first son at Shaare Zedek Hospital in Jerusalem. It is not clear who is the oldest woman in the world to have given birth. In 2013, the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail reported that Rajo Devi Lohan of India was the record-holder, having given birth six years earlier at 69. However, ABC News in 2008 reported on another Indian woman, Omkari Pankwar, who gave birth to twins at 72.
Dr. Tal Biron, an obstetrician/gynecologist at Meir Hospital, told The Jerusalem Post that Schachar can breastfeed the baby despite her advanced age. While noting that “we do not recommend” attempting pregnancy beyond age 54, Biron said, “We were very excited during the delivery. I have no doubt she will be an excellent mother. She is a very special person. The baby is very cute.”