Surrogacy and Its Types

Almost 40% of the couples suffer from fertility issues. Our present lifestyle which is plagued with stress, pollution, unhealthy food, substance abuse, lack of exercise has taken a heavy toll on our vitality and fertility. Childlessness affects the personal relationship of the couple, throwing them into a pit of more stress and depression. The society ridicules them, throwing them into that pit even further. For them having a child seems like the ultimate boon. This demand has forced medical science to dig deeper into this problem and come up with various solutions. Today IVF clinics and ertility centres can be found in each and every region.

IVF, Artificial insemination, Surrogacy: there are many options available to the couples suffering from infertility. All of these methods allow the couples to create their own biological child. The selection of the method depends upon the problem a couple is facing. If the problem is related to sperm quality or quantity of the male partner then artificial insemination or IVF can be tried. Surrogacy is an option often tried when the female partner is incapable of carrying the child in the womb. Besides, for male homosexual couples and single intended fathers, surrogacy might be the only option for having a biological child.

Surrogacy is actually an arrangement between the intended parent or parents and the surrogate. A surrogate is also known as a birth mother because the embryo will grow up in her womb and she will nurture the foetus until she delivers him/her. Since surrogacy actively involves a third member, the surrogate, it is often termed as third party reproduction. Generally, surrogacy is chosen when other assisted reproductive techniques fail.

Surrogacy is of two types and depending on the situation, one of the types is selected.

First type is Gestational Surrogacy: When the intended mother is capable of creating an egg but for some reason she is incapable of nurturing the child, the womb of another woman is used for that purpose. Here the egg is collected from the ovaries of the intended mother (in this case the biological mother) and fertilised using the sperms of the intended father. Here the procedure of fertilisation is same as that of the In Vitro fertilisation. After that, the embryos will be implanted in the uterus of the surrogate (birth mother). She will nurture them and give birth to them but she will not have any sort of biological link with the child.

Traditional Surrogacy:

There is another type of surrogacy, mostly performed in the following cases:
(1) The intended mother is incapable of producing the eggs as well as carrying the embryo,
(2) Male homosexual couples
(3) Single intended father

In this case the surrogate provides the eggs as well. This is known as traditional surrogacy. In this case the surrogate is not only the birth mother but also the biological mother. Even if sheis the biological mothers, surrogates have no right over the child once the delivery process is over.

Be it traditional or gestational, surrogacy in itself is a time consuming and exhausting procedure but in many cases it is the only remaining option for having a biological child.