The advancement of science and medicine has allowed for new and innovative family building options. Surrogacy is a family building option for couples who cannot successfully carry a pregnancy.
A gestational surrogate is a woman who is able and agrees to carry a pregnancy for another person. The intended mother provides her genetic material via her egg (or occasionally from an egg donor), the intended father provides his sperm (or a sperm donor), and through in vitro fertilization, an embryo is created. This embryo may then be transferred to the gestational carrier. While the baby will share a biological connection with this woman, she will not be the genetic mother of the baby.
In traditional surrogacy, the woman uses her own egg to become pregnant, which is fertilized by the intended father. Most commonly, this is performed through intrauterine insemination (IUI), but in vitro fertilization (IVF) may also be used, especially if the intended parent(s) wish to perform genetic testing on the embryos prior to transfer. This means that the surrogate has a genetic relationship to the embryo.
Society for Reproductive Medicine states that gestational carriers may be used when there is a clear and definitive medical indication that prevents the intended couple from carrying a child. Examples of some such conditions include: