The word ‘surrogate’ has originated from the Latin term ‘surrogatus’ which means ‘a substitute’. Surrogacy is an ART measure to have genetic children through a process of in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) and embryo transfer in a surrogate woman, who carries the pregnancy and subsequently delivers the baby.
Before proceeding with the medical procedure of surrogacy, there is a legal contract made through a lawyer, between the commissioning parents (biological parents) and surrogate & her husband. The contract includes the consent of the commissioning parents(biological parents), surrogate and her husband; along with government approved identity proofs.
Who Needs Surrogacy?
- Couple with medical problems
- Women with absence of uterus
- Recurrent abortions
- Repeated IVF failure
- Women with a history of cancer (uterus)
- Poor endometrium lining
- Single parent
Steps of Surrogacy
- Counselling of both the parties regarding the procedure and the legalities
- Selection of the surrogate mother- The surrogate is screened and investigated to rule out any medical conditions as well as infections.
Selection Criteria of Surrogate mother
- Preferred Age- Less then 30years.
- Reproductive Background- at least delivered one healthy child.
- Healthy weight range.
- All blood investigations should be normal.(Viral markers, thalassemia, diabetes, thyroid, Liver function test, kidney function test).
- Normal uterus and ovaries with lining of uterus being more then 8mm.
- No family history of diabetes and hypertension.
- No history of any major surgery.
- Surrogate must not have any addiction of smoking and alcohol.
- Surrogate should be physically and psychologically fit.
- No history of any complication in previous pregnancy.
- No history of genetic disorder.
- No history of diabetes, thyroid, hypertension and tuberculosis.
- Egg Retrivel, Fertilization and Embryo Transfer
- The commissioning (biological) mother undergoes standard IVF procedure (controlled ovarian hyperstimulation followed by egg retrieval or eggs may be of a donor). The eggs are then fertilized through IVF with sperms of the commissioning (biological) father and embryos are formed and frozen.
- The cycle of the surrogate is monitored to prepare endometrial lining for implantation.
- Once the lining is ready, the embryos are transferred in the surrogate mother’s uterus.
Frequently asked questions
Q.1 What is surrogacy?
Ans:- Surrogacy is an assisted reproductive technology (ART) procedure that involves in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) and embryo transfer into a surrogate woman, who then carries the pregnancy and delivers the baby.
Q2. How long does surrogacy take?
Ans:- A) Donor Surrogacy programme- 1 month to prepare a donor for ovum pickup and then embryos are freezed.
B) Surrogate needs to visit atleast 4-5 times to the clinic for ultrasounds to monitor uterus lining.
C) These treatments are menstrual cycle dependent so, total time taken is 1-3months.
Q3. What is the success rate of Surrogacy?
Ans:- 80-90% per cycle