Gestational Carrier

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Women who are not able to carry their own pregnancy for medical reasons can explore the option of another female carrying her child. These women serve as a gestational carrier (or surrogate). In these circumstances, a gestational carrier IVF cycle will be performed, whereby eggs are harvested from the female (biologic mother), fertilized in the laboratory with her partner’s sperm and transferred into the gestational carrier’s uterus. 

Medical indications for choosing a gestational carrier IVF cycle are usually disorders of the uterus, such as previous hysterectomy or congenital abnormalities. However, certain medical conditions in the mother may also preclude her from safely carrying a pregnancy and/or may actually threaten her life.

Other situations include same-sex male couples using an egg donor and their sperm to create an embryo with IVF. The embryo is then transferred to a gestational carrier who will carry the pregnancy for the couple.

Prior to initiating a cycle of gestational carrier IVF, regardless of the indication, it is required that the intended parents, along with their gestational carrier undergo medical, psychological and legal counseling. 

To learn more about gestational carriers (surrogacy), visit reproductivefacts.org, or call the UofL Physicians - Fertility Center at 502-588-4400.