According to IVF experts, infertility affects about one out of every six couples worldwide. Infertility, however, is more than just the inability to conceive after 12 months of trying. It also includes women who can’t carry a pregnancy to term.
In the past, adoption was a way out for such women. But now, this notion is regarded as an archaic one as there are other better options for infertile couples who can opt for advanced infertility treatments and egg/sperm/embryo donation.
Most intended parents prefer gestational surrogacy because the chances of the surrogate laying claim to the baby are slim. They also feel more in control because they can choose the genetics of the baby. An advantage to having an egg from an ovum donor or the intended mother is that for the surrogate mother, it does away with the complex emotional issues of being a gestational/genetic donor mother. Many surrogate mothers find that their family is more receptive to such a surrogacy.
Using an egg donor
Parents who choose to have a gestational surrogate carry their child cannot genetically contribute to their offspring. Nor do they wish to have their surrogate mother be the genetic mother. These parents usually rely on outside assistance via sperm or egg donation.
While sperm donation has been around for years, egg donation is relatively new. In this process, a screened egg donor undergoes hormone therapy (usually injections) over many weeks which cause her ovaries to release more than one egg.
Between one and 15 eggs are usually harvested during a surgical procedure. They are then inspected for quality and either frozen for use later or immediately mixed with sperm for the intended father or a sperm donor.