If you scan the entertainment pages at your local supermarket, you’ll likely see stories of women over 40 who are now proud parents. Thanks to significant advances in reproductive medicine, women like these, and even members of the LGBTQ community can fulfill their dreams of building a family.
Making the decision to start a family can be highly emotional, and for gay men, the path to fatherhood requires serious planning, beginning with the process of In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). This is a lot less stressful when you have the information you need, as well as a top-notch medical team.
At CT Fertility, we understand the challenges involved, and are ready to support gay couples throughout their journey. Today, we’re bringing you the basics of IVF—what it is & how it works for gay men.
What is IVF?
In vitro fertilization or IVF is the process by which mature eggs are fertilized by sperm in a laboratory dish outside the body, after which, the fertilized egg (embryo) is implanted into the uterus to initiate pregnancy.
The steps involved in the IVF process —ovulation induction, egg retrieval, sperm retrieval, fertilization, and embryo transfer—constitutes one cycle, and can take approximately two weeks.
Giving birth to a healthy baby using IVF depends on different factors like age, lifestyle, reproductive history, and infertility causes.
IVF is the most effective form of assisted reproductive technology (ART), which refers to special techniques used to help an individual become pregnant, and it is most often tried when other fertility techniques have failed.
How does IVF work for gay men?
In order to have a child, a gay man needs a female surrogate who will carry the baby and a gestational carrier. Donor eggs from the carrier female are fertilized with the man’s sperm in the embryology lab. The resulting embryos are then transferred to the surrogate’s uterus. If one of more embryos implant, she will become pregnant and carry the baby to term.
Any male who plans to participate in IVF has to undergo a special FDA-mandated screening to make sure his sperm are healthy, to determine the quality and quantity of sperm, and to see whether additional procedures are required to fertilize the egg.
It’s important to note that surrogacy laws vary from state to state, so you should consult an attorney experienced in reproductive law, and understand the legal definitions of “parent” in your state as well as the rights of surrogates and egg donors.
CT Fertility is proud to provide a wide range of options to help you meet your family building needs, including a comprehensive surrogacy program for gay males. Please don’t hesitate to contact our fertility clinic today for more information.