How Surrogates are Changing the Face of Infertility

pregnant heart loveThis post was written by Laura Johnson

Recent advancements in technology, such as blastocyst transfer, have made surrogacy a safe and viable option for couples unable to conceive. More women than ever before are carrying babies for those who cannot, and surrogacy has become a widely accepted practice in the United States. Truly, surrogacy is changing the face of infertility by allowing infertile couples to have a child that is genetically theirs, and the process if far simpler than it once was.

The Initial Stages of Surrogacy

It’s important that surrogates and infertile couples choose to work with a fertility company. If you want to become a surrogate, it’s wise to choose a service that manages the entire journey, from application to post-delivery. In order to have a successful outcome, wherein all parties are satisfied, a service is essential because they coordinate everything and will step in to mediate any disagreements; although, disagreements will be rare because contracts and discussions will be had before IVF takes place.  

baby sleeping handIt all starts with an application. Potential surrogates fill out a pre-screener, as does the infertile couple. The application process will be different depending on whose filling it out. In most states, a surrogate cannot donate an egg because an egg adds a genetic connection between her and the child she’s carrying, which may lead to a complicated legal matter. It is better that the surrogate carry a child that is genetically unrelated to her. Unlike egg donors who are typically under 30, surrogates can be as old as 40 as long as they’re healthy.  

Much like a dating service, couples won’t be matched with a surrogate who doesn’t have the same relationship goals as them. The agency will ensure that couples are only brought together who share the same medical beliefs and who agree on ethical details, such as the closeness of their partnership. Once all parties are accepted by the agency and brought together, a contact will be drafted between them. The contract will map out all financial obligations, as well as it will provide a roadmap for the surrogacy.

The Process of IVF

Before IVF can occur, the surrogate must undergo a lengthy screening process. She will receive a psyche evaluation and medical screening. If she doesn’t already have insurance, her case worker will help her obtain the necessary insurance. It’s important that surrogates enjoy pregnancy because being pregnant does require a commitment to healthy eating and reduced physical activity.  

pregnant sleepIn the distant past, in vitro fertilization, or IVF, didn’t always have such consistent results. The method used to call for an egg to be placed into a petri dish with thousands of sperm, but insemination couldn’t be guaranteed. Today, embryologists can inject a single sperm into an egg. Blastocyst transfer further perfects insemination as it allows for three days of laboratory monitoring of the fertilized egg. Implantation into the surrogate doesn’t take place unless successful growth of cells are observed. Since the induction of these methods, surrogacy success has risen about ten percent.

The surrogate will be asked to take medication and show up to every appointment scheduled. Once the embryo is confirmed to have successfully transferred, the IVF doctor will wean her off the medications and all future appointments will take place with an OB. Regular prenatal care will take place from that time until delivery.

It’s good for surrogates and the intended parents to communicate often throughout this process. Regular updates about the baby should be provided, but the agency can and will guide the families through this communication.

baby feet love handsThe gift of surrogacy changes the lives of childless couples who cannot produce children on their own and want a child that is genetically related to them. With many of today’s clinics boasting a pregnancy success rate up to 90 percent, couples no longer feel that infertility is a battle they can’t win.

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