All You Need to Know About Gestational Surrogacy

All You Need to Know About Gestational Surrogacy

by Neelam Chhagani

urrogate mother requirementsNowadays, Gestational surrogacy is the most common type of surrogacy and it might be the best family building option for you.

If you are struggling with infertility, it is essential to remember that there are many ways to build a family, and gestational surrogacy is one of them.

Surrogacy has gained immense popularity worldwide, especially in the Western countries where adoption is an incredibly exhaustive, long bureaucratic process. It might take a couple of years to get a child through adoption. On the other hand, surrogacy only takes about fourteen months to twenty-four months to be completed.

Surrogacy has become a controversial yet popular treatment for infertility. In this infertility treatment, a woman carries and delivers a baby for childless couples. This woman is known as the surrogate mother, and she might even provide the egg (as is the case in traditional surrogacy), or she may only carry the child that has been conceived by another woman’s eggs (as is the case with gestational surrogacy).

According to the surrogacy agreement, the surrogate mother waives all parental rights and gives the baby immediately after delivery to the intended parents.

Gestational Surrogacy not just allows parents to take full control of their reproductive options, but also to create families sharing the same genetic bonds. Through surrogacy, the children that are born are the natural offspring of the intended parents.

Broadly, there are two types of surrogacy – traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy.

The traditional surrogacy type makes use of eggs and natural insemination of the surrogate mother to conceive successfully.

On the other hand, gestational surrogacy is done through in vitro fertilization (IVF). The sperms and eggs are taken from either a donor or the intended parents. A surrogate mother is just a carrier of the surrogacy baby.

As surrogacy continues to be popular, especially gestational surrogacy, below given is everything that you need to know before hiring a gestational surrogate.

What Is Gestational Surrogacy?

Gestational surrogacy is a type of surrogacy in which the surrogate mother is not genetically related to the baby that she is carrying.

Even though statistics relating to gestational surrogacy are challenging to find, this path to parenthood has helped lots of individuals and couples grow their families. That is becoming increasingly common, and a lot of celebrities like, Nicole Kidman, Elton John, and Sarah Jessica Parker have admitted to using surrogacy to build their family.

In gestational surrogacy, embryos are created through IVF (in vitro fertilization) using sperm and eggs of the donors or intended parents, which is then transferred to the surrogate mother. The medical procedure is done with the help of a fertility specialist and come under the Assisted Reproduction Techniques (ART).

Gestational surrogacy is sometimes also referred to as full surrogacy or host surrogacy. In most cases, at least one or both parents are genetically related to the baby. That is what makes gestational surrogacy less complicated when it comes to the legislation than other forms of surrogacy since second-parent or stepparent is not required in this type of surrogacy.

The very 1st successful procedure of gestational surrogacy took place in 1985. Between 1999 and 2013, approximately 2% of all Assisted Reproductive Technology cycles made use of a gestational carrier. The number of surrogate mothers also increased from 727 in 1999 to 3,432 in 2013.

During 2017, there was 284,385 ART performed in the USA. That resulted in the live births of 68,908 (delivery of one or more babies) and 78,052 live-born infants.

Gestational surroagcy requirementsGlossary of surrogacy related terms you need to be familiar with

• Intended parents: Intended parents are those who will become the legal parents of the child born through surrogacy. In most cases, the intended father is both the sperm donor and the child’s legal father.

The intended mother’s legal status is less specific, especially in countries that do not have any particular legislation. Upon the birth of the child, the birth mother’s name might be put on the child’s birth certificate, and by default, she becomes the legal mother. In such a case, the intended mother will have to complete a court process to get a parental right and remove the surrogate mother as the legal mother.

• Surrogate mother: Also known as a gestational carrier, a surrogate mother is a woman who agrees to carry a pregnancy for the intended parents. As part of the surrogate agreement, the surrogate mother gives complete custody and parentage to the intended parents.

• In vitro fertilization or IVF: IVF is a clinical procedure where the egg is fertilized in the lab and developed into an embryo before implantation into the surrogate mother.

Characteristics and outcomes of gestational carrier cycles
• Gestational carrier cycles between 1999 and 2013 resulted in 13,380 deliveries and the birth of 18,400 kids. There is data showing that 9,819 of these infants were twins, triplets, and other higher multiples.
• About 16% of intended parents using a gestational carrier were not residents of the USA.
• Intended parents using a gestational carrier were older parents while the gestational carrier was less than thirty-five years of age.
• Gestational carrier cycles’ rate of implantation, pregnancy, and also live births were higher than non-gestational carrier cycles.

Who Might Consider Gestational Surrogacy?

• Hopeful single parents who wish to have a biological child
• Couples who are struggling with infertility
• Same-sex couples want to to become parents
• Individuals and couples who do not wish to a genetic link between their child and the surrogate
• Any female who is not able to safely carry a pregnancy to term

How to Find A Surrogate Mother?

By far finding the surrogate mother is one of the most important but toughest job for an intended parent. A gestational surrogate mother is the integral part of the full surrogacy program.

Any parenthood journey via surrogacy starts with finding a suitable surrogate mother who is just perfect for you. It is not an easy task but still achievable, with the right help.

There are a few ways by which you can find a surrogate mother. Take a look.

 1. Use a surrogacy agency to find a surrogate mother:

You can use a surrogacy agency to find a surrogate mother. The agency’s responsibility is to help hopeful parents find the perfect surrogate and make all the arrangements. But you need to pay a hefty surrogacy agency fee to get their help for a full surrogacy process.

2. Take help of surrogacy agency to find a surrogate mother:

If you do not want to go through a surrogacy agency, you can ask a relative or friend to be a surrogate for you. The surrogate mother process remains the same.

3.Explore Online resources to select the suitable surrogate mother:

With extensive internet use within the society, prospective intended parents can find the surrogate mother in the various online platform.

The same way a surrogate mother looking for an intended parent can look out for parents within the online community. There are surrogacy directories which make it possible to find each other.

However, you have to make sure that the surrogate is of legal age and has already given birth to one healthy child. That ensures that the surrogate understands the medical risks associated with pregnancy and childbirth, along with the emotional bonding with a new-born.

The Gestational Surrogacy Process

There are a few steps that couples have to go through to ensure that the gestational surrogacy process is smooth and safe as possible.

Here’s a rundown of the different phases.

• Screening phase for surrogate mother:

The first step is to choose a surrogate mother. Once you have made your choice, either from your source or a surrogate agency, the surrogate is going to undergo a thorough screening process.

That includes screening for infectious diseases, compatibility, psychological capacity, and the overall well-being and health.

All the parties involved will be asked to sign a form of consent concerning pre-conception, pre-birth, and post-birth processes, which will include parentage on behalf of the intended parents. That makes sure that the intended parents and surrogates are both fully aware and in the agreement of the procedure.

• Implantation phase of the gestational carrier:

The gestational carrier or surrogate mother is given medication before the process of IVF to enhance the chances of successful conception.

When the intended mother or egg donor follicles mature, her eggs will be removed from her ovaries to be fertilized in the laboratory with either the donor’s or the intended father’s sperm. The embryos will continue to develop in the laboratory for three to five days. After that, it will be transferred to the surrogate mother’s uterus for implantation.

Since the surrogacy relies on the fertility treatment, known as IVF, the rates of its success vary by the quantity and quality of the eggs, besides other factors.

A study conducted by the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology in 2015 revealed that the rate of success is 50.2% when fresh donor eggs are used, and the success percentage is 38.3 when frozen donor eggs are used.

• Pregnancy phase of gestational surrogacy

Process of IVF is completed, and there is a positive pregnancy test confirmed. The surrogate begins her pregnancy journey, where she will be needed to follow the requirements of the intended parents that related to the baby’s wellness and health.

That includes the doctor’s appointment, diet, and regimens recommended by the intended parents. The surrogate mother is then compensated for her effort and time accordingly or as per the agreement.

  • Surrogacy baby birth

The surrogacy baby birth is like any other natural pregnancy birth.  It is possible for a commissioning parent to be part of the birthing process. It will make them more involved and feel more emotionally connected with the baby.

Unlike natural pregnancy, a surrogacy process can have lots of work to after baby birth. Your reproductive layer can help you set up a pre-birth order or post birth control as per your specific case.

In case you are doing a cross- border surrogacy process.  Approach a local surrogacy agency can help you in getting a baby birth certificate.  With the help of a local lawyer or even without a lawyer, you can apply for the citizenship and travel documents for newborn baby.

Gestational surroagacy costHow Much Does Gestational Surrogacy Cost?

The gestational surrogacy costs vary as it depends on various factors. For instance, if you have asked your relative or friend to become a surrogate for you, she might not take a surrogate mother compensation fee for carrying your child. But, you will have to pay for all the other expenses related to IVF procedure, antenatal pregnancy care, and childbirth.

So, overall surrogacy cost can be low, but still gestational surrogacy, not an easy financial enterprise. The standard surrogate mother compensation is in a range of $35,000 to $60,000. So, if you are using a friend as a surrogate mother, you can save this fee.

However, on average, gestational surrogacy costs approximately $115,000 to $150,000 in the USA.

The actual surrogacy cost varies state wise depending upon the cost of medical procedure and surrogate mother compensation.

Generally, surrogacy costs with breakdown include the fees paid to the surrogate mother, including the diagnostics, tests, disposables, medicines, and everything else needed for a healthy and standard delivery.

What Is the Success Rate of Gestational Surrogacy?

Gestational surrogacy success rates are 95%. Compared to other fertility treatments, gestational surrogacy has a much higher success rate. That mainly depends on the health and age of the surrogate mother.

Using a gestational surrogacy give a chance to the fertility specialty to choose a lady who has an excellent reproductive history and healthy enough to carry a surrogacy pregnancy to term. Besides this, a significant advancement in medical technology gives better chances of conception than before.

Conclusion for gestational surrogacy

Gestational surrogacy has several advantages that make it a popular choice to have a baby.

• The ability to have your child biologically or through in vitro fertilization
• The option of gender testing and selection on the embryo before the implantation
• The ability to choose the right surrogate who is emotionally and physically prepared to carry your child or children
• Allows intended parents to have a genetic tie with their child

If you are trying to get pregnant and build a family, but unable to do so for health or fertility issues. You can speak to your healthcare provider about considering gestational surrogacy. 

IVF Conceptions has been guiding and assisting intended parents since 2010 to build thier families via gestational surrogacy.  Get in touch now for a free consultation to have the best surrogacy option for you. 


I am Neelam Chhagani, CEO and International Patient Follow-up Manager, representing IVF Conceptions. I work as a surrogacy consultant and assist and guide the Intended Parents to become parents via surrogacy, globally.It will be my great pleasure to assist you.

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