Gestational Carriers (Surrogacy)
In the instance where a woman is not able to carry a pregnancy on her own, or a gay couple wishes to have a child, the couple may decide to use a gestational carrier (also referred to as surrogate mothers or a host uterus).
Patients who may benefit from using a gestational carrier are women who have severe uterine anomalies, have had a hysterectomy, who have been advised against carrying a pregnancy for medical reasons or men who have no uterus with which to have a child.
Keep in mind that the timeline for gestational carrier is usually longer than other fertility treatments because the designated male partner’s sperm must be frozen in quarantine for six months prior to fertilizing an egg that is transferred into a gestational carrier. For gay couples or single men choosing to have a child, a donor egg will be necessary as well, with the option to choose frozen donor eggs through our Michigan Egg Bank or an egg donor to provide fresh egg donation.
If you are considering surrogate mothers in your family planning, please speak with a clinical nursing coordinator to learn about the details involved in preparing for this type of cycle.
Here at Michigan Reproductive Medicine, we have offered gestational surrogacy since 1998. Patients from around the world visit us for this treatment, and we are experienced in minimizing inconveniences and time away from home for out-of-town and international patients.
Michigan law has substantial limitations for surrogate arrangements, and independent legal advice on this issue is recommended which can extend beyond the state of Michigan.
What is Gestational Surrogacy (host uterus)?
Gestational surrogacy is an infertility treatment appropriate when normal embryos can be formed, but it is medically desirable or necessary for these embryos to develop within the uterus of a gestational carrier (host) rather than the egg source (female partner or egg donor). Gestational surrogacy can be a highly effective treatment but, as with conventional IVF, all the risks and benefits associated with IVF need to be considered.
What Special Issues Should be Considered in Selecting a Surrogate Mother?
It is recommended but not required that the gestational carrier be a woman of proven fertility, under the age of 40, and with at least one healthy, living child. A gestational carrier may be a relative, a friend, or an individual previously unknown to the couple considering gestational surrogacy through a specialty agency, and should be highly committed to fulfill her surrogate obligations. MRM advises all individuals contemplating gestational surrogacy arrangements to consult legal counsel prior to involvement in this program, and we will facilitate such legal counseling upon request. MRM does not become involved with the financial arrangements, if any, between the parties.
We’ll be happy to schedule a consultation for you with one of our expert fertility specialists.