Donation & Surrogacy
Tennessee Reproductive Medicine provides many paths to parenthood including surrogacy and egg, sperm, or embryo donation fertility treatment options.
Not sure which treatment option is right for you? Learn more below or contact us online for questions.
When to consider donation
Egg donation is an option for women who are able to carry a pregnancy but cannot produce healthy eggs for fertilization, who have been found to have very poor egg quality, or if the woman carries a genetic disorder that she does not want to pass on to the child.
Donor eggs collected from a known or, typically, an anonymous donor are fertilized with the male partner’s sperm to create embryos. Then one or more embryos is transferred into the woman’s uterus to create a pregnancy through in vitro fertilization (IVF).
For male factor infertility or women wishing to have children on their own, sperm donation may be considered. Lesbian couples wishing to have children may also consider sperm donation in order to produce a pregnancy without a male partner.
Donor sperm is collected from a known or, typically, an anonymous donor and frozen. The sperm can be placed into the woman’s uterus (intrauterine insemination, also known as IUI) or in the IVF process.
During the IVF process, embryos are created and one or more is implanted in a woman’s uterus to begin a pregnancy. The remaining embryos are then cryopreserved (frozen and stored) or discarded.
Some couples choose to donate their unused cryopreserved embryos. An infertile couple (either from female or male infertility, or both) may consider using donated embryos as a way for the woman to carry a pregnancy.
When to consider a gestational carrier or surrogate
If a woman has healthy eggs but is not able to carry a pregnancy, either due to problems with her uterus or other health factors, she may consider using a gestational carrier. A gestational carrier is a woman who carries a couple’s or another woman’s pregnancy, but is genetically unrelated to the baby. Gay male couples may also consider surrogacy, using donor eggs combined with one of the partners’ sperm, creating one or more embryos to implant into the gestational carrier’s uterus.