Surrogacy is a promising treatment for infertility. It can potentially solve many intolerable difficulties that the infertile couples and their families face. A Surrogate or Surrogate Mother is a woman who bears a child on behalf of another woman, either from her own egg fertilized by the other woman’s partner or from the implantation of a fertilized egg from the other woman in her uterus.
A couple, who want to have baby through surrogacy, has to take a decision on the type of surrogacy they want to pursue.Surrogacy is categorized into two types:
In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate is biologically linked with child she carries thus this surrogacy is also known as partial or genetic surrogacy. The genetic relationship between child and surrogate makes traditional surrogacy emotionally complicated. Traditional surrogacy is mostly used by single men, same-sex male couples and women who cannot produce healthy eggs because they need a donor’s eggs. When the intended surrogate is inseminated with the semen of the husband of the couple, the procedure is known as straight surrogacy or traditional surrogacy.
Gestational surrogacy, also called partial surrogacy or host surrogacy, is the most common type of surrogacy today. In gestational surrogacy, the surrogate mother is not genetically related and will be free from all responsibilities after delivery of the child.
- When a sperm or an ovum is donated by a third party, fertilized by IVF, and transferred to a surrogate, it is called Gestational Partial Surrogacy.
- If both the sperm and ovum are donated by a third party, fertilized by IVF, and the resulting embryo is transferred to a surrogate, it is known as Gestational Full Surrogacy.
Traditional Surrogacy Vs Gestational Surrogacy
The major difference between gestational and traditional surrogacy is the surrogate’s biological connection to the child. Before opting surrogacy as an option, intended parents need to consider all of the following factors to decide between traditional vs. gestational surrogacy:
- Medical Process: Traditional surrogacy uses IUI, whereas gestational surrogacy uses IVF as medical procedure.
- Legal Process: Traditional surrogacy laws tend to be more complicated than gestational surrogacy laws. In traditional surrogacy, surrogate mother also has parental rights and need to be terminated after the baby is born.These additional legal procedures are not required in the gestational surrogacy process.
- Costs: The cost of gestational surrogacy is considered to be higher than that of traditional surrogacy. This cost difference is due to the different medical process it involves. IUI is less expensive than IVF and tends to involve fewer medical procedures and fertility treatments.
- Risks: Traditional surrogacy contains a greater emotional and legal risk than gestational surrogacy. In traditional surrogacy, being the biological mother of child, surrogate mother may possess emotional feelings for the baby. In that case, she can theoretically challenge the surrogacy arrangement in court, which could result in a lengthy and expensive legal battle for everyone involved.
- Acceptance: Traditional surrogacy is banned in many countries including India due to its legal and emotional complications; whereas this is not the case with gestational surrogacy.