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Understanding Surrogacy

Sometimes it takes more than 2 people to make a baby and if you are considering Surrogacy, we can help.

Our teams at Care have been helping people to have a child through surrogacy for many years. We use all of our experience to make your journey to parenthood as supported and informed as possible.

What is Surrogacy?

Surrogacy is when a woman, the surrogate mother, carries a baby for a couple who are unable to conceive or carry a child themselves for medical or physical reasons.

Who is surrogacy for?

Surrogacy is a fertility treatment option for couples and individuals who cannot conceive on their own. There are all kinds of reasons why you might need treatment with a surrogate. Reasons for having treatment with surrogacy include:

  • if you have a medical condition that leaves you without a functioning womb.
  • If you are suffering from a medical condition that makes pregnancy difficult or unsafe.
  • Surrogacy for gay men is for male same sex couples who are hoping to start or add to their family.
  • Surrogacy for couples unable to conceive together.

Types of surrogacy

There are two types of surrogacy, Gestational Surrogacy and Traditional surrogacy. Both types of surrogacy involve the surrogate mother carrying a baby to term on behalf of the intended parents.

Gestational Surrogacy (Full or Host Surrogacy)

In Gestational Surrogacy, the baby is not related to the surrogate mother, and the intended parent/mother-to-be can donate her own eggs for conception and the surrogate carries and gives birth to the baby. For Gestational Surrogacy, eggs from the intended mother or donated eggs from a different party are fertilized through IVF in the laboratory with sperm from the intended father or donated sperm to make an embryo.

The embryo is then transferred and implanted in the uterus of the gestational surrogate, who carries the baby until birth.

Traditional Surrogacy

In Traditional Surrogacy, also known as partial surrogacy, an egg from the surrogate mother is used, and is artificially inseminated, through either ICSI or IUI treatment using sperm from the intended father or a sperm donor. In Traditional Surrogacy then, the surrogate is therefore the biological mother of the baby she is carrying. 

How to find a surrogate?

Finding the right surrogate can take time, if you would like to progress with treatment but you haven’t found the right surrogate yet, we can take you through your IVF treatment and freeze your embryos to use later.  

We partner with a number of non-profit agencies who we can put you in touch with, to help you to find a surrogate and begin your surrogacy treatment journey.

When considering a surrogate there’s a lot to think about. That’s why we’ll be with you every step of the way, from finding a surrogate, through IVF treatment, to the birth of your baby. Our teams at Care are here to talk through your needs, worries, and all the possible implications with dedicated support and counselling sessions.

What does the Surrogacy process involve?

Initial Consultation

One of our dedicated consultants will look after you and talk you through the process, answering any questions you may have. You will discuss your medical history as well as the different treatment options available to you.

Implications Counselling

This is to ensure everyone involved fully understands the implications of surrogacy treatment. This is a mandatory step in the surrogacy process and one which many people find incredibly helpful. Our counsellors will ensure you have all the information you need from an emotional perspective and have a space to explore any questions or concerns you might have. Embarking on fertility treatment is a big step and we want to support you at every step of the way.

Creating your embryos

To make your embryos you can use the sperm and eggs of you and your partner, or donated sperm and/or donated eggs, as part of IVF or ICSI treatment. If you’re looking to use donor eggs or donor sperm, our donation IVF specialists will be there to guide you through the donation IVF process. If you haven’t found a surrogate you can still create embryos and freeze and store them until you’re ready.

Embryo Transfer

Once you have found your surrogate and your embryos are ready, the embryo can be transferred to your surrogate. If treatment is successful, your surrogate will then carry the pregnancy as your embryo grows. If, unfortunately, the transfer was unsuccessful, you will work closely with your consultant to understand why and create a plan for the next steps.

Chris and Les' Surrogacy Journey

Watch Chris and Les' journey to beautiful baby Eddie with the help of an egg donor and their wonderful surrogate, Anna.

How much is Surrogacy in the UK?

When exploring surrogacy in the UK, costs are dependent on the type of treatment required and whether this includes IVF or ICSI

Surrogacy UK suggests a cost range for expenses from around £7,000 up to £15,000. However, you must remember that every situation is different, and you may wish to formalise an outline of reasonable expenses with your surrogate before entering into a surrogacy agreement.

View our fee schedules for more information on treatment costs.

When you’re ready to start your Surrogacy journey, you can contact Care and be completely confident that you will receive personalised and compassionate fertility care. Our experienced team can help you break your journey into small, manageable steps and make sure you have all the information and guidance you need to feel empowered and in control. We will do everything we can to make sure that you can have the positive journey to parenthood that you deserve. 

Fill out our easy to complete form and our team will contact you to help you take your first steps with Care x