The surrogacy process at one agency, ConceiveAbilities, requires a woman to complete an application, submit relevant medical information that may include a current physical exam, wait for an appropriate match, and then undergo fertilization, according to its website. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine recommends surrogate mothers have an interview with a mental health professional, thorough medical testing that includes testing for viral infections, and a history of at least one successful term pregnancy, as stated on its website.
An evaluation of an applicant's medical, work, lifestyle and pregnancy history is the first step in surrogacy, explains ConceiveAbilities. The next step creates a proper match between a surrogate mother and the intended parents. Once a match is established, a surrogate applicant meets with the intended parents' doctor, who conducts an exam and explains the entire process of fertilization. The surrogate candidate may take hormones and birth control pills to prepare her uterus, and then a doctor uses a catheter to implant an embryo. During the course of the pregnancy, a surrogate is closely monitored and engages in regular contact with the intended parents.
The two types of surrogate mothers are traditional and gestational surrogates, notes WebMD. As of 2015, in vitro fertilization techniques make gestational surrogacy more common. Traditional surrogacy implanted a father's sperm in a surrogate mother, which made the surrogate the baby's biological mother. In vitro fertilization allows an already fertilized egg to be implanted in a surrogate mother, so both intended parents are also the biological parents.