Surrogacy: top 7 questions asked by intended parents — answered
Posted on 09/18/2022 in Fertility Treatment Options

Surrogacy: top 7 questions answered

Surrogacy: top 7 questions answered


What is Surrogacy?

Surrogacy is a way of having a baby in which a woman (surrogate mother) consents to carry a pregnancy for the intended parent(s) who cannot conceive and carry the pregnancy themselves. Surrogacy can be gestational or traditional, commercial or altruistic, — depending on the effective legislation in the country. 


Who is it for? 

  • Singles (single men and single women)
  • Married and unmarried heterosexual couples
  • LGBTQIA+ singles and couples 


Who may consider surrogacy?

Surrogacy is a way for LGBTQIA+ couples to become parents. It’s also a way for single men to become single fathers by choice, for single women to become single mothers by choice, or for couples who cannot conceive and/or carry a pregnancy to term because of medical conditions such as:  

  • a series of failed Embryo Transfers (repeated IVF failure) or a history of recurrent miscarriages.
  • no uterus (absent uterus (Mayer–Rokitansky–Küster–Hauser syndrome) or after hysterectomy).
  • uterine or/and cervical malformations or alterations making it impossible to carry a pregnancy.
  • diseases and/or conditions preventing from becoming pregnant because the baby’s and mother’s health would be at high risk.
  • endometrial hyperplasia, endometriosis, and other endometrial diseases.


Gestational vs Traditional Surrogacy 

Gestational Surrogacy, the most common type of surrogacy today, also known as IVF Surrogacy or host Surrogacy, is the process where a surrogate mother becomes pregnant through In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) or Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET), where an embryo is transferred into her uterus. In Gestational Surrogacy, the surrogate mom is not donating her own genetic material; the embryos contain either an intended mother’s oocytes or donor oocytes, thus, the surrogate mother is not genetically related to the baby she is carrying.  

Unlike Gestational Surrogacy, traditional Surrogacy is the process where a surrogate mother becomes pregnant through IUI (Intrauterine Insemination) or IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) using her genetic material (donating her eggs), thus, she has the genetic link to the baby she carries. This type of Surrogacy may bring many legal complexities which is why it is rare nowadays. 


Selecting the program

Usually, the surrogacy agencies and fertility clinics offer different programs starting from the Basic and ending with the Premium. Before fueling up, any program is tailored to the intended parents’ case depending on the age, health, genetic material which will be used, and personal needs. Usually, the clinics and surrogacy agencies offer the following surrogacy programs: 

  • Surrogacy using own gametes (IVF using intended mother’s oocytes and the husband’s sperm + Surrogacy)
  • Surrogacy using the donor’s eggs (IVF using the donor’s eggs and the husband’s sperm + Surrogacy)
  • Surrogacy with Tandem Egg cycle and the husband’s sperm (IVF using intended mother’s oocytes and her husband’s sperm + IVF using the donor’s eggs and the husband’s sperm + Surrogacy)
  • Surrogacy with Sperm Donation (IVF using intended mother’s eggs and the donor’s sperm + Surrogacy)
  • Surrogacy with Frozen Embryo Transfer 
  • Two Surrogate Mothers Program
  • Two Surrogate Mothers Program with Egg Donation or Tandem Cycle

 

How long does Surrogacy take?

On average, a Surrogacy program can take about 11 to 15 months: 1–2 months are spent preparing the documents including the Surrogacy Contract, selection and matching with a surrogate mother, screenings and other medical procedures including the Embryo Transfer, then 9 months are spent on pregnancy and 1–2 months for completing the paperwork for the baby. 


Surrogacy Success Rates

Statistically, the chances of getting the surrogate mother pregnant are around 60 to 99% per cycle. In the best–case scenarios, success rates can range from 80 to 94% chance of pregnancy for journeys with at least one transfer, and 95 to 99% chance of pregnancy for journeys with two or three transfers.


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