What Iѕ Gеѕtаtіоnаl Surrogacy?

What Iѕ Gеѕtаtіоnаl Surrogacy?


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Gestational surrogacy is when the egg of the intended mother, or a donor, is fertilized by the intended father, or a donor, and then placed inside the uterus of the surrogate mother. This is done through the process of in vitro fertilization. Gestational surrogacy means that the surrogate who carries the baby has no biological connection to the child or children she will carry.


Gestational surrogacy is the most popular form of surrogacy in the United States and is accomplished by the process of in vitro fertilization. In vitro fertilization, or IVF, is accomplished through cycles that last approximately four to six weeks. These cycles may include several weeks worth of oral contraceptives (birth control) for the surrogate mother and are intended to regulate her menstrual cycle.


In vitro fertilization occurs in several different stages. In the first stage, the ovaries of the intended mother, or donor, are stimulated by fertility drugs to produce additional eggs, instead of the one that is normally released during the menstrual cycle. The intended mother will take the fertility drugs for approximately two weeks before the eggs are ready to be retrieved. Multiple eggs are needed in case not all of the eggs are properly fertilized. The fertility doctors will use ultrasound images and blood tests to determine when the eggs are ready to be retrieved.


When the eggs are ready to be retrieved, the fertility doctor will administer a small amount of anesthesia to the intended mother. They will then use trans-vaginal ultrasound and aspiration to retrieve the matured eggs from the intended mother.

After the eggs have been retrieved, the fertility doctors will inspect the eggs for the healthiest ones to use for insemination. The healthiest eggs are then placed in a medium to await fertilization. During this time, the fertility doctor will also select the healthiest sperm from the intended father, or donor’s, semen. Now the best sperm will be placed within the healthiest eggs and they will then be placed in an incubator to see if fertilization occurs.


Within a few days, the fertility doctor will be able to tell which eggs have been fertilized and select the ones that will be implanted into the uterus of the surrogate mother. Within a couple of weeks, the surrogate will be ready to take a pregnancy test to see if the procedure was successful. If the procedure was, indeed, successful and pregnancy has occurred, the real work begins for the surrogate.


The surrogate will be closely monitored throughout her pregnancy to ensure that both she and the baby (or babies) she is carrying are healthy. The surrogate will stay in near constant contact with the intended parents as the pregnancy progresses so that they develop a bond with the baby that the surrogate is carrying. When it is time for the bay to be born, the intended parents are often allowed into the delivery room to witness the birth of their child.


After the birth of the baby, it is not uncommon for the surrogate and the intended parents to stay in contact. They may exchange pictures and birthday cards as the child grows. Some surrogates even provide breast milk for the baby for a time. The journey into surrogacy is a long one, but it is so worth it in the end for both the surrogate and the couple she has helped grow into a family. 

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