During the prep stage of the professional surrogate maternity process, a surrogate mother candidate is selected, which must meet the following requirements:
- a child-bearing age of 20-35 years;
- a mother should have her own healthy child;
- no physical or psychological diseases or pathologies;
- a personal willingness to take part in the process.
Before launching the process and regulating the legal basis of the surrogate maternity, the mother should pass the following medical procedures:
- blood type & Rh factor tests;
- blood test for venereal diseases, hepatitis B & C;
- simple urine analysis;
- clinical blood analysis;
- blood coagulation test;
- biochemical blood analysis;
- urethral & cervical canal smears for flora analysis;
- pap smear;
- general therapist examination;
- general psychiatrist examination.
If all examination stages are successful and indicate that the future surrogate mother is perfectly healthy and good for bearing a child, doctors start working on the synchronization of the potential genetic and surrogate mother’s menstrual cycles.
This is necessary in order to achieve the surrogate mother endometrium maturity so that the artificially planted embryo is able to successfully attach and develop normally. For these purposes, the surrogate mother is injected with special hormonal medicine.
This period requires thorough, constant monitoring of the level of hormones in the future bearing mother’s blood. The ultrasound monitoring of the endometrium and ovaries takes place regularly.
Once the cycles are synced up, the extracorporal fertilization takes place: embryos extracted from the genetic parent are transferred to the surrogate mother’s uterine cavity.
As for the embryo formation, it happens in the lab conditions, under the supervision of expert embryologists. They implement the insemination of the ovum and cultivate embryos in vitro.
For that, a genetic father must donate sperm for the follicular puncture procedure. A father is strongly recommended to refrain from masturbating 3-5 days before the donation in order to increase the amount of biomaterial.
Once the sperm is donated, the extracted ovum, tested out for the general quality beforehand, are inseminated with the help of the Petri dish. After that, they are placed in an incubator and 12-18 hours later are assessed by doctors. In case of success, the fertilized ovum is placed in the specialized environment for the initial development of embryos.
Several days past (3-5 days), if embryos develop well (i.e., the embryo cells divide with the proper speed), they are transferred to the surrogate mother’s uterine cavity.
This procedure takes place in the gynecological examination chair. A catheter is injected into the uterus so that a flexible needle could deliver embryos to the organism for their further growth. There is no pain or uncomfortable sensations involved with this procedure.
After that, the surrogate mother’s organism is supported with the progesterone-rich medicine in order to enhance the internal uterine shell’s condition, which is responsible for holding embryos.
On the 21st day after the embryo transfer, the pregnancy is confirmed via the ultrasound. During the whole pregnancy, the surrogate mother is under doctoral supervision.
When the baby is born, it legally and factually becomes a donor parent’s official child, which is backed by item 2 of article 123 of the Ukrainian Domestic Relations law.