While infertility has become a widespread problem, continuous efforts of researchers and specialists have brought forward innovative techniques to put an end to even the most complex of reproductive issues in a successful manner. One of the latest and most effective amongst artificial reproductive techniques is surrogacy, which has come up as a ray of hope for couples who have suffered disappointment from all quarters. Surrogacy involves a woman called the surrogate mother, who plays the vital role of carrying the baby of the couple in her womb and delivering it safely to hand over its legal rights to the intended parents. Depending upon the medical condition of the couple, they have to choose between traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy.
Traditional surrogacy involves the artificial insemination of the surrogate mother with the sperm of the intended father, so that she becomes pregnant with it, has the baby and gives it to the parents. In this kind of surrogacy, the surrogate mother is also the biological mother of the child, as it has been created with her egg.
Gestational surrogacy has the surrogate mother impregnated by placing the embryo formed by IVF with the intended couple’s sperm and egg. In case the intended mother cannot produce viable eggs, a donated egg can also be used for creating the embryo. The job of the surrogate is to bear the embryo in her womb till the end of the pregnancy and deliver the baby for the couple. In this case, the surrogate is not the genetic mother of the child, but just its birth mother.
Gestational surrogacy happens to be a more common form of surrogacy practiced these days because in this kind of surrogacy, the intended parents are the genetic parents of the baby and this means that there are lesser legal complications in such cases.
Finding a Surrogate Mother
There are two ways to find a surrogate mother for a childless couple. The first one can be carried out by the couple, whereby they can find a friend or relative to help them by lending her womb for carrying their baby. In this case, there can be a considerable reduction in legal complexities as well as cost of surrogacy. On the other hand, if the couple is unable to find someone such to help them, they can enlist the services of a surrogacy agency for this purpose. The service of the agency includes finding a surrogate mother, in addition to managing the legal and commercial aspects of the arrangement. There are certain things to be kept in mind while choosing a surrogate mother for a couple, which include the following:
· The woman should be at least 21 years old, and her age should fall in the normal reproductive years.
· She should not suffer from any medical problems, including genetic or contagious ones. Additionally, the woman should have already delivered at least one healthy baby.
· She should also be in good mental health, which can be proved by her passing a psychological screening test.
· She should understand her role and responsibility as a surrogate mother and also be agreeing to the contract, which carries the clause of relinquishing the baby to the intended parents after its birth.
Finding and choosing the right surrogate mother maximizes the chances of success for the surrogacy treatment. This method is particularly helpful for the women who have some problems with the uterus or do not have a uterus at all. Women with medical conditions that make it impossible to go ahead with a safe pregnancy can also experience the joy of parenthood with this technique. Similarly, gay couples can also start a family of their own by using surrogacy as the treatment technique.