Today many childless couples choose surrogacy as an opportunity to grow their family. It is safe and legal in many countries worldwide. However, one of the first challenges is what surrogacy type to choose: gestational or traditional surrogacy?
Gestational surrogacy is the most common type of surrogacy today. The main reason is that the surrogate is not related to the baby she is carrying.In gestational surrogacy, the egg of the surrogate mother is not used for fertilization. It means that the baby is not genetically connected to the surrogate.
The embryo is created with the egg and sperm of the intended parents (or donors). Then, with the In Vitro fertilization, the embryo is transferred to a surrogate. Before the transfer, the surrogate needs to take the hormonal medication for 2-4 weeks to prepare the uterus for pregnancy. The embryo is transferred through the catheter. The process is painless and doesn’t require anesthesia.
This form of surrogacy is also called “host surrogacy” or “full surrogacy.” Commonly, at least one of the intended parents is genetically related to the baby, and the surrogate is not.
In traditional surrogacy, the woman who carries a baby is the biological mother. That's because her egg is used for fertilization. Traditional surrogacy can be achieved with IVF (using surrogate’s eggs and the intended father’s sperm) or by intrauterine insemination (with the intended father’s sperm or donor’s sperm).
The surrogate carries and delivers the baby, and because she is a biological mother, she must refuse her parental rights, and let the intended parents to raise the baby.Most of the surrogacy agencies do not practice this type of surrogacy because of potential conflict of interest.
The main difference between gestational and traditional surrogacy is in the biological connection between the surrogate and the baby she is carrying. This difference affect such surrogacy processes:
IP's should know the difference between in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intrauterine insemination (IUI). The first one is used for gestational surrogacy, and the last one is applied for traditional surrogacy. IUI is an easier process than IVF and requires SM to undergo fertility treatments. IVF requires a surrogate mother to take special hormonal medicates to prepare her uterus for egg retrieval and embryo transfer.
On average, gestational surrogacy is more expensive than a traditional one. This is because of the medical process involved – IVF is more expensive than IUI, and for traditional surrogacy, there is no need to involve the fertility treatment.
Waiting time for the traditional surrogacy is longer than for the gestational surrogacy.Commonly, surrogate mothers prefer the gestational surrogacy, because it’s easier for them legally and emotionally. And also, a lot of surrogate agencies, as well as WCOB, don’t work with the traditional method.That’s why it is hard to find the surrogate mother for the traditional surrogacy, which increases waiting time for the intended parents.
Gestational surrogacy is much more comfortable in terms of surrogacy laws. In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate is the biological mother of the baby, and she has parental rights. These rights have to be terminated after the child is born. In some countries, the intended parents need to complete the separate adoption.
For the gestational surrogacy, the intended parents don’t need to go through additional legal processes – a parentage is established by pre-order. And commonly, the intended parents are the biological parents of the baby.
Traditional surrogacy causes more emotional and legal risks, as the gestational one. It happens because the surrogate mother isis genetically linked to the baby, and she may have an emotional bond with the child. And also, she has parental rights, and she can change the surrogacy agreement in the court. As a result, it will be the long and expensive legal battle for the surrogate mother, the intended parents, and the agency, if it’s involved
There are a number of pros and cons to consider while choosing between gestational and traditional surrogacy. But the decision is up to the intended parents and the surrogate