Mother gives birth to wrong baby after fertility clinic mix-up

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Mother gives birth to wrong baby after fertility clinic mix-up
Mother gives birth to wrong baby after fertility clinic mix-up. Source: Pixabay/RitaE

Two couples in California gave birth to each others’ babies after a fertility clinic mix-up.

According to a lawsuit, two couples in California gave birth to each others’ babies, raising children that were not theirs, after a fertility clinic mix-up.

Daphna Cardinale said she and her husband, Alexander, suspected straight away that the baby girl she gave birth to in 2019 wasn’t theirs due to the baby’s darker complexion.

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Ms Cardinale said the couple tried to ignore their doubts and fell in love with the baby, trusting in the vitro fertilisation process and their doctors.

They learnt three months later that she had carried and given birth to another woman’s baby, and the other woman had given birth to their baby.

Ms Cardinale said during a news conference with her husband: “I was overwhelmed by feelings of fear, betrayal, anger and heartbreak.”


“I was robbed of the ability to carry my own child. I never had the opportunity to grow and bond with her during pregnancy, to feel her kick.”

The Cardinales’ lawsuit accuses the Centre for Reproductive Health (CCRH) in Los Angeles California and its owner, Dr Eliran Mor, of medical malpractice, breach of contract, negligence and fraud.

According to attorney Adam Wolf, who represents all four parents, the other couple involved in the mix-up will allegedly file a similar lawsuit and are wishing to remain anonymous.


The lawsuit claims that the CCRH implanted the wrong embryo’s into the women, mixing them up.

Both baby girls were born just a week apart in September 2019, and both couples unknowingly raised the wrong child for almost three months until they had DNA tests that confirmed the mix-up.

Ms Cardinale had to tell her seven-year-old daughter, who had formed a bond with the baby, that they weren’t actually sisters.

“My heart breaks for her, perhaps the most,” she said.

“The Cardinales, including their young daughter, fell in love with this child, and were terrified she would be taken away from them,” the complaint says.

“All the while, Alexander and Daphna did not know the whereabouts of their own embryo, and thus were terrified that another woman had been pregnant with their child – and their child was out in the world somewhere without them.”

The babies were swapped back in January 2020.

“This case highlights an industry in desperate need of federal regulation,” said Mr Wolf, whose firm specialises in fertility cases

Following the mix-up, both babies have been returned to their biological parents. Both families have made an effort to stay in each other’s lives and plan to “forge a larger family,” Ms Cardinale said.

“They were just as much in love with our biological daughter as we were with theirs,” she added.


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Laura is from a small seaside town in North Wales and has also lived in Liverpool and Manchester, where she studied English Literature and worked in social media and marketing. Laura moved to the city of Zaragoza last August to teach English, but after missing the coast she decided to move to beautiful Nerja to enjoy the sun and sea. Laura has a passion for animals, films, outdoor activities, writing and the environment.

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