1.How long does it take to find a surrogate mother?
Currently there is a serious shortage of surrogate mothers in Georgia. The war in Ukraine has increased the demand for surrogacy and the available surrogates are not able to meet the demand. In many cases you are likely to face a very long waiting period. On the other hand, we at Pons Medical will be able to match you with a suitable surrogate in less than 2 months because we recruit our surrogates in Armenia where there is less demand for surrogacy programs. You will also be able to make your surrogacy journey in Armenia, with local surrogate mothers.
2. Do I get to choose the surrogate mother?
In accordance with the terms of our contract, you will have the opportunity to approve or reject a particular surrogate mother candidate. However, if you reject the surrogate we have proposed, you may face unnecessary delays. All our surrogate mother candidates have passed medical and psychological tests and are approved by the medical coordinator. They are exceptionally fertile women with good health and previous healthy pregnancies and children.
3. How many attempts will it take to get a pregnancy?
In many cases we achieve pregnancy after only one attempt. First of all, it is important to remember that an attempt is basically an embryo transfer, i.e. the transfer of the blastocysts created during the fertilization procedure to the intended mother’s uterus. In our programs, we include at least three embryo transfers as part of our most popular package (Silver Program). Some other couples will be successful after two or three attempts, but in 90% of cases a pregnancy is achieved in 3 attempts or less. This success rate is relevant as long as we transfer two embryos per transfer, and the numbers are even better when we do genetic testing on the embryos (PGT-A), which tells us beforehand which embryos are viable and which are not.
4. What happens if my surrogate mother has a miscarriage?
Miscarriages are not common, but they do occur in about 10% of cases, and almost 100% of them occur during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Miscarriages are emotionally painful for both the surrogate and the intended parents. In most cases, miscarriages do not have any risks or long-term consequences for the surrogate, everything is resolved quickly and painlessly, and the surrogate can return to the program after a few weeks. If the intended parents have embryos available, we simply repeat the embryo transfer. Some intended parents experience a psychological setback after a miscarriage. We encourage these intended parents to persevere and to trust the processes of life. Not all pregnancies will be successful. However, in many cases this is a natural mechanism to prevent unhealthy embryos from developing.
5. How can I be sure that my baby will be healthy?
Thanks to the rapid development of genetics and reproductive medicine, several methods are now available to help us prevent unhealthy children. One of these methods is the genetic testing of embryos before implantation, known as PGS (Pre-implantation Genetic Screening) or PGT (Pre-implantation Genetic Testing). This test allows us to know in advance which embryos are euploid and which are not. Euploid embryos are those without chromosomal abnormalities. If an embryo is euploid, a wide range of diseases and syndromes are discarded, including Down’s syndrome, Klinefelter’s syndrome, Patau’s syndrome, Edwards’ syndrome, etc.
Another way to prevent unhealthy babies is based on the analysis of cell-free fetal DNA (cffDNA) of the developing fetus. This type of test is called non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT), which is used to diagnose fetal trisomies. Examples of these tests are: Harmony, Panorama and NIFTY. Although NIPT does not detect a wide range of genetic diseases compared to PGT, it is still useful if you did not have the opportunity to perform PGT immediately after the IVF procedure. The syndromes detected are Down syndrome (trisomy 21), Edwards syndrome (trisomy 18) and Patau syndrome (trisomy 13).
6. Can the surrogate mother keep the baby after the birth?
The short answer is no. The regulations of Armenia and Georgia do not give any parental rights to the surrogate mother. Compared to the regulations of other countries such as Ukraine, where the surrogate mother retains the right to keep the baby, this possibility does not exist in Armenia and Georgia.
7. Will the surrogate or the donors be mentioned on the birth certificate?
The birth certificate issued by the civil registry of Armenia and Georgia does not mention the surrogate mother or any sperm or egg donor used in the surrogacy process.