Surrogacy May Be the Answer
What is surrogacy?
Surrogacy is a process in which one woman carries a pregnancy for another woman or intended parent. Surrogacy has been practiced for thousands of years, when one woman would turn to another woman to help her have a child. This profound relationship between a surrogate and intended parent continues today with the modern practice of surrogacy. At the Los Angeles Reproductive Center (LARC), Drs. Marc Kalan and Nurit Winkler are greatly experienced in the technical, emotional and medical aspects of modern surrogacy. The expert staff at LARC manages a multitude of surrogacy cycles each year and is dedicated to making the experience successful for their patients.
There are two types of surrogacy:
Traditional surrogacy in Los Angeles, CA
A traditional surrogate is a one who carries a pregnancy to term for intended parent(s), as well as provides eggs for the pregnancy. The resulting child is therefore genetically related to the surrogate. Most fertility specialists prefer to not utilize traditional surrogacy because of the potential negative psychological implications of the process on the surrogate and child, as well as the greater risk for legal ambiguity as to parental rights once the child is born.
Gestational surrogacy in Los Angeles, CA
A gestational surrogate is a woman who carries a pregnancy, for intended parent(s), that is conceived with eggs from another woman. In a gestational surrogacy, embryos are created through in vitro fertilization from eggs and sperm of the intended parents or their selected donors. Once an embryo is created, it is transferred into the surrogate’s uterus. The gestational surrogate, therefore, does not have a genetic link to the offspring and thus acts solely as a carrier for the pregnancy.
The popularity of gestational surrogacy has increased significantly in the last decade. With the United States being one of the most open and welcoming legal environments, patients from all over the world come here to build their families with gestational surrogates. Within the U.S., different states have vastly different surrogacy laws. California is one of the most progressive and supportive states in the nation. California family law clearly protects all individuals in third party reproduction (egg donation and gestational surrogacy). The courts in this state have consistently protected intended parents’ rights and obligations, regardless of whether the parents use their own genetic material, donor eggs, and/or donor sperm. Because of this precedent, patients are coming from all over the world to California when in need of gestational surrogacy. The physicians at Los Angeles Reproductive Center are accustomed to treating local as well as international patients for this exciting and hopeful process.
Candidates for Gestational Surrogacy
There are many reasons why a couple, such as an LGBTQ couple, or individual may seek the help of a gestational surrogate. From medical to emotional to logistical and more, the indications for gestational surrogacy can vary significantly.
Among the most common reasons for the use of a surrogate:
Damaged or scarred uterus from prior surgery, infections or complications of a prior pregnancy.
Absence of the uterus due to surgery or in women who are born without a uterus (uterine agenesis).
Malformation of the uterus in women who are born with an abnormally shaped uterus (unicornuate or bicornuate) or in those who are exposed to damaging chemicals when in uteruo.
Medical conditions that can put the women at high risk during pregnancy or delivery
Heart disease, such as congestive heart failure or certain types of arrhythmias
Kidney or liver disease such as cirrhosis or kidney failure
Autoimmune diseases such as Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE, Lupus)
Intestinal absorption disorders (following gastric bypass surgery)
Uncontrolled seizure disorders
Other chronic conditions that require medications which are potentially dangerous to a pregnancy, but cannot be stopped.
History of severe postpartum depression or other physiological conditions that may negatively impact mother and/or child.
Women with repeat miscarriages which cannot be otherwise prevented.
Same sex couples
Same sex male couples require both an egg donor and a gestational surrogate.
Multiple IVF failures
Couples or individuals who, despite prior attempts,cannot successfully conceive and deliver a child with standard fertility treatments.
Logistical, personal preference etc.
If you have questions about gestational surrogacy and if it is right for you, please contact one of our board specialized fertility specialists in Los Angeles, CA Dr. Nurit Winkler or Dr. Marc Kalan. They will be happy to answer your questions and walk you through the process.