Information About OPTS
OPTS is a national, not-for profit, all-volunteer
educational, networking and referral organization that
supports infertile couples in building families through
surrogate parenting and other assisted reproductive
Our members are parents, prospective parents, surrogate
mothers, professionals in the field of infertility and
surrogacy and supporters of reproductive choice in 47 states
and 5 foreign countries. If you do choose surrogacy to build
your family, we hope you'll join OPTS and be a "voice for
choice" in your home state.
There have been an estimated 10,000 births* via surrogate
mothers in this country since the mid 1970's With
infertility on the rise, more couples than ever are facing
the prospect of a future without biological children. For
some of them, surrogacy or egg donation may represent their
only options for a related child. Below are several options
Classic or Traditional Surrogacy (via artificial
insemination) - With this option, the surrogate is
inseminated with the intended father's sperm, usually in a
doctor's office. The surrogate's egg and the sperm unite to
create an embryo which she will carry to term. The surrogate
is the genetic as well as birthmother of the baby.
Gestational (IVF) Surrogacy - Also referred to as Host
Uterus or Gestational Carrier. At an IVF clinic, the
intended parents' embryo is transferred to the surrogate.
With this option, the surrogate is the birthmother but has
no genetic tie.
Egg Donation - This option involves the retrieval of ripe
follicles from a donor's ovary.The eggs are fertilized with
the intended father's sperm. The resulting embryo is then
transferred to the intended mother or a gestational
surrogate, who will carry and deliver the baby.
Before going ahead with any of the above, find out all you
can about it. Talk to people who have been successful and
learn just what will be involved. Find out from any clinic
or program you may be interested in just how many transfers
have been attempted and what percentage resulted in the
birth of a baby. This is more important than how many
embryos have been fertilized in a test-tube.
Make sure to obtain competent legal advice before going
forward. This is where an attorney experienced in surrogacy
or egg donation agreements can be particularly helpful. Also
make sure that all parties receive psychological counseling
and complete medical screening (including full
disease-testing) in advance. Your wishes and expectations
and those of your surrogate mother/egg donor should also be
expressed and defined ahead of time. Please also be aware
that most IVF clinics will not accept you as a patient
unless you and your surrogate/egg donor have signed
agreement. This is usually required whether or not the
contract would be enforceable.
We want you to have a positive experience and happy outcome.
Please contact us if further information or help is desired.