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IVF Surrogacy Information

There are many would-be parents today who are unable to conceive and/or carry a child naturally. Unlike many years ago, however, today there are some very viable options available to such couples and individuals for still being able to have the child that they so much want and deserve.

The process of surrogacy entails the use of one woman's uterus to implant and carry the embryo of a child – as well as to deliver the baby – for another individual or couple. The woman who carries the child is referred to as a surrogate mother.

How the Surrogacy Process Works

There are two primary types of surrogacy. These are traditional and gestational. Each works in a somewhat different fashion:

  • Traditional Surrogacy – In a traditional surrogacy situation, the surrogate mother will become artificially inseminated with the sperm of the baby's biological father. In this case, the sperm is implanted into her uterus procedurally where the child can then develop in her womb. With traditional surrogacy, the surrogate mother is also the biological mother of the child.
  • Gestational Surrogacy – Because many women who cannot conceive or have children naturally still wish to be a biological mother, there is also the process of gestational surrogacy. In this instance, in vitro fertilization is used whereby eggs are harvested from the woman wishing to be the biological mother of the child. These eggs, along with sperm that is collected from the baby's biological father, will all be implanted into the uterus of the surrogate mother. At this point, the surrogate mother will carry the child in her womb until its birth.

Becoming a Surrogate Mother

Prior to being approved to become a surrogate mother, a woman must undergo medical and psychological testing in order to ensure that she is healthy enough to proceed. This typically entails a thorough evaluation that is oftentimes performed by the staff at a surrogacy institution.

Once the woman has been approved and accepted into the surrogacy program at an institution, the agency will begin to suggest her services to potential individuals or couples with whom she may make a good fit.

When a potentially compatible match has been determined, both the surrogate mother and the biological parent or parents of the child will meet in person. This will help move the process along in terms of determining an appropriate comfort level for moving forward.

The Legal Aspect of Surrogacy

In addition to the medical and emotional issues that are associated with surrogacy, there are also many legal considerations that must be addressed. This may involve putting in writing all of the legal requirements that are related to the surrogacy arrangement.

Particular issues can include the needs of both the surrogate mother as well as the biological parent or parents. This may also entail the writing of a financial related contract that outlines how the medical and other related expenses of the surrogate mother will be reimbursed. Once all of these issues have been addressed and put in writing, the process of impregnating the surrogate mother can begin.