Gestational Carrier FAQs
You’re not alone. We’re here to answer all your questions.
Becoming a gestational carrier is a journey that requires understanding, planning and commitment. As experienced fertility doctors in Raleigh we recognize that each journey is different. However, it is our goal to partner with you during this journey and answer any questions you may have. Below we’ve compiled a list of the most common questions about the gestational carrier journey.
Traditional surrogacy refers to a woman who becomes pregnant when her own egg is fertilized by the intended sperm through intrauterine insemination.
A gestational carrier carries a child to full term for the intended parents. The embryo is created by the intended parents through the process of IVF, also known as in-vitro fertilization. This embryo is then placed in the uterus of the gestational carrier who will give birth to the baby.
To become a gestational carrier your first steps include determining if you meet the basic requirements. These requirements include:
- you have had at least one successful pregnancy
- you do not have any medical conditions that could interfere with the pregnancy
- you are a non-smoker
- you are willing to take prenatal care measures
In some cases we make exceptions for certain circumstances, however, gestational carriers are typically between the ages of 21 and 33 years old.
Please contact us to discuss your circumstances in detail.
Working with an agency is a decision that you will need to make at some point when looking to become a gestational carrier. Choosing to partner with an agency can save you time in searching for intended parents as well as ensure that your rights and carrier expectations are met. Our agency is also your advocate and helps ensure you are represented throughout the journey.
Yes. When you become a gestational carrier you have no genetic relationship with the child.
About the Journey
Every gestational carrier journey is unique. Typically, the process can take up to 1 to 2 months to be matched with the intended parents and 3 to 4 months to complete the medical preparations and psychological screenings.
Yes. Once the intended parents review your profile and requests to meet you, you’ll then receive a profile of the intended parents.
The amount of contact and interaction you have with your intended parents largely depends on the wishes of both parties. In most cases, the relationships positively evolve overtime as your journey progresses.
Your initial medical procedures and screenings typically take place at our fertility clinic. Once you become pregnant you’ll begin visiting with your obstetrician and gynecologist to ensure the health and wellness of you and the baby. You’ll give birth to the baby at a hospital or the agreed upon location.
At Atlantic Reproductive Medicine Specialist it is important that you know that we are with you every step of the way. When you become a gestational carrier with us we will work to ensure your mental and physical wellness. We will guarantee the most advanced fertility and medical treatment and provide a family psychologist and legal representation.
Getting matched with your family can take up to 6 months.
Once you’ve been matched with the intended parents you will begin the journey with a psychological evaluation and establishing binding legal agreements that detail your compensation, the responsible party for related pregnancy expenses, identify the legal parents of the born child and more. Next, you’ll undergo fertility treatments to prepare your body for the embryo transfer. This entire process (from contracts to embryo transfer) can take up to 6 weeks.
Yes. Your partner will be required to attend psychological screenings to ensure you’re both mentally prepared for the journey. Medical screenings are required and typically include blood and urine testing, a physical exam, and in some cases complete medical records review. Your partner will also need to undergo sexually transmitted disease screening as well.
Pregnancy and Beyond
Absolutely! When you become a gestational carrier you become pregnant through IVF. During the IVF procedure the embryos are placed directly into your uterus so the fallopian tubes are not used.
All pregnancy complications are handled on a case by case basis. However, if during your previous pregnancy you developed preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, blood transfusions, best rest, or any other pregnancy health challenges becoming a gestational carrier could put your life at risk.
Whether or not your intended parents will be present at birth is a decision that is typically made during the development of your birth plan. Your birth plan is typically a plan that is put into place to help parents and gestational carriers make tentative arrangements for the birth of the child.
As a gestational carrier you will have no genetic relationship with the child. Therefore, the legal intended parents to the child you carry will be identified in the contracts and agreements regarding your planned pregnancy. In the Baby M case, the woman was a traditional surrogate and had a genetic link to the child.