Gestational surrogacy is useful for situations where a woman is unable to carry a pregnancy herself
Examples of this would be in situations where her uterus is severely damaged or absent, where she is medically unable to carry a pregnancy for some reason or where it has proven difficult to get the lining of the uterus to respond to hormonal stimulation. Gestational surrogacy can help in all these cases.
Who do we work with?
We work with a number of agencies that recruit and screen potential gestational surrogates. Ideally, the gestational surrogates have been pregnant in the past without complication, are in good health and are under 40. The screening process begins with a detailed examination of the potential surrogate’s medical history and past pregnancies. Next is a thorough physical examination and a procedure to visualize the interior of her uterus such as a hysteroscopy.
Next is a panel of infectious disease testing, basic hormone screening tests and an illegal drug screening panel. Then the potential surrogate has also a psychological evaluation. After all the testing, the surrogate is available for selection.
There is a legal component to gestational surrogacy and the agencies coordinate this as well. This includes creating a comprehensive contract between the intended parents and the surrogate. If the surrogate is to deliver the baby in California, the attorney will submit documents. This allows the intended parent’s names will be on the birth certificate. In some states, the surrogate’s name goes on the birth certificate and the intended parents have to adopt the baby after birth.
About the gestational surrogacy process
The first step in treatment is to coordinate the menstrual cycle of the surrogate with either the intended mother or an egg donor. This can occur within two weeks. Then the gestational surrogate takes medication to cause the lining of her uterus to develop as it would in an ideal natural cycle. Once we fertilize the eggs, the surrogate has one or two embryos transferred into her uterus when they are five days old. She is then placed on restricted physical activity for one week and the pregnancy test is performed 10 days after the embryo transfer.
We have been working with gestational surrogates for over 20 years and have had tremendous success during that time. When used in conjunction with egg donors, the pregnancy rate has been greater than 90%. When using the intended mother’s eggs, we have had success that is comparable to the IVF pregnancy rates for women of the same age.
International travel for gestational surrogacy
For our international patients, we are able to initiate treatment from their home country. We require that they arrive approximately one week prior to the egg retrieval procedure. We provide concierge services for travel and lodging arrangements, transportation, dining and other amenities.