Surrogacy is not a straightforward procedure. Therefore, it is difficult to estimate the exact timeline for surrogacy. Multiple steps and stages are involved in this process. Some of these have a definite time and some are time variable.
Following are the different steps involved in the surrogacy process:
- Decision making about surrogacy is the right choice
- Screening process
- Finding a perfect match
- Accomplishments of legal aspects
- The clinical process requires to proceed IVF or IVF with gametes donor
- Pregnancy and delivery
- Processing for relinquishing the born child
Therefore, surrogacy involves multiple parties and various factors that influence the duration of the surrogacy. Overall, after transferring the embryo to the surrogate’s womb, which gives a successful pregnancy outcome within a one-year whole process is completed. The following paragraphs explain the detailed timeline involves in the surrogacy procedure:
Approximately one to six months require to decide whether surrogacy is the ultimate option to choose for family building.
The decision making is the first and foremost important step. Surrogacy requires both emotional involvement and financial investment. Like every other medical process, surrogacy has its advantages and disadvantages along with legislative involvement. In some cases, intended parents prefer to cross broader surrogacy, which also requires legal consequences. Intended parents need to know all the details of the procedure. Therefore, it is a major decision for intended parents.
A woman also requires almost one to six months to meet the standard set of requirements to become a surrogate. The guideline followed in surrogacy ensures to pursue the process securely to have a healthy pregnancy and proper collaboration between the intended parents and the surrogate.
Approximately seven to thirty days require to select the surrogacy agency
A reliable surrogacy agency is a one-stop solution to proceed with the hazel free surrogacy cycle. Surrogacy agencies take the responsibility to organize the whole surrogacy process and also take care of the requirements of both intended parents and surrogates by addressing their individual needs.
Therefore, the selection of a surrogacy agency is a critical factor. Intended parents need to collect all the detailed information about the capability of completion of a successful IVF cycle along with assisting in the surrogacy process including the necessary advice and support required to complete the surrogacy journey.
One to four weeks for medical screening
Every fertility clinic has its medical process to screen a woman for surrogacy. Moreover, the clinician also has their own opinion to add some additional tests depending upon the physical condition of the woman. However, some generalized tests are included in the screening which includes a pap smear, blood tests, hysteroscopy, and various blood tests. To perform these screening tests, one needs to visit the fertility clinic and within 24 hours all the tests are usually completed. Intended mothers do not need to take any hormonal therapy in case of the egg donation process is also included in the treatment plan. In such cases, the egg donor needs to take hormonal therapy to stimulate egg production.
One to two weeks for Psychological screening
The evaluation of the psychological state of the candidate is important before starting the medical process to smoothly run the procedure. Analysis of psychological difficulties if any need to determine at the very beginning stage. In some cases, the counselor checks the mental status of both the surrogate and her husband.
More than two weeks require to find the match
Depending upon the requirement of the intended parents matching surrogate is time taking process. Usually, more than two weeks require to find out the perfect match according to the expectation of the intended parents. Usually, intended parents check the prospective profiles of the surrogates for selection. Surrogate also checks the details intended parents. And If both the parties show the interest, surrogacy agency arranges the meeting between them which may be through telephonic discussion, video calling, or in-person communication. During this meeting, if everything is going well, then formalize the process by negotiating the first legal agreement.
Two to six weeks for legal contracts
After agreement from both parties, the surrogacy legal agreement has been signed between them to proceed further. Both intended parents and surrogate will have their lawyer to ensure their interests are protected. All the details including the parental right of the born child as well as the compensation amount of surrogate and the payment schedule are mentioned in this legal agreement.
Four weeks for a medical appointment and medication
After signing the legal agreement between both parties, the clinical phase will start. During this phase, the surrogate need to visit the clinic for administering surrogacy medications. Prescribe medications, dosing depends upon the doctor’s decision. Usually, medications need to start four weeks before embryo transfer. If the embryo transfer becomes positive, the surrogate may need to continue medication until about the 10th–12th week of pregnancy.
Almost two weeks for embryo transfer
If everything going accordingly, then the embryo is transferred to the surrogate’s womb. Almost two weeks require to confirm the pregnancy. But in case of failure, the doctor stops the medication to bleed out. After two months of the gap, the surrogate can try for a second transfer.
After four to six week of successful embryo transfer
The first ultrasound is conducted to check the pregnancy between 6 to 9 weeks. During the ultrasound, the heartbeat and growth of the fetus have been monitored.
Pregnancy and delivery
After completion of 40 weeks of gestation, a surrogate delivers the child. Almost seven to eight months after completion of the IVF cycle, the surrogate gives birth to the child.
Immediately after born the child, all the legal procedures including issuing the birth certificate, legal parental rights are completed to smoothen the relinquish procedure. Usually, within 48 hours of childbirth, all these formalities are completed to start a new journey of life.