The Miracle of Conception by Proxy

The Miracle of Conception by Proxy

10:36 29th June 2021 | surrogacy

The desire to be biologically fruitful is universal!

Most married couples long for the joy of parenthood. Unfortunately, not all of them are able to conceive naturally due to various factors or impediments in either or both males and females.  Infertility brings untoward consequences and great burdens on marriages and couples; more so when there seems to be no way around the cause of their challenges with fertility.

The Infertility Challenge

For conception to occur naturally, the male partner has to deposit viable or healthy sperm in the vagina of the spouse. These sperm cells need to travel up the normal genital tract of the female to meet and fertilize an egg or ovum (which would have been released from one of her two ovaries at ovulation) in a patent or normal fallopian tube. The fertilized gamete has to journey to a normal uterus (womb) where it is implanted for the normal development to take place during the period of pregnancy. Even though these processes appear simple, different challenges or factors in either or both partners can disrupt the processes and cause infertility. 

Male infertility can result from congenital or acquired problems of the testes. Similarly, female infertility can also occur due to problems with the ovaries or the fallopian tubes or the womb.  

Adoption

In the past, some couples or individuals facing these challenges had to settle for adoption as the only option to enjoy the joy of parenthood. Such individuals included women with ovarian failure who are unable to produce quality eggs from their own ovaries or those whose wombs could not carry pregnancies due to various diseases or previous procedures/ surgeries. Males with azoospermia (complete absence of sperm cells) or severe oligospermia (very few sperm cells) also had to settle for adoption except for those who encouraged their spouse to ‘seek help’ outside of the marriage in order to remove their shame.

Gamete Donation

With the advancement in the science and technology of assisted reproduction therapy, almost all categories/factors of male and female infertility can now be successfully managed. Women suffering from ovarian failures for various reasons can now carry babies by opting for gamete or embryo donation. Such experience would be akin to that of a post-menopausal woman getting pregnant miraculously!  This involves young women with good ovarian reserve, who are free from transmissible diseases and who have compatible genotypes and ABO blood group with the recipient, donating eggs for in-vitro fertilization to women facing such challenges. Such donors can be their relatives, friends or others who are willing to assist them. 

Surrogacy

Other women with diseased or absent uteri can now experience the joy of motherhood of their own biological children through surrogacy. In surrogacy, women with good health who have successfully carried one or more pregnancies to term with living children of their own can volunteer within the necessary legal framework to carry pregnancies for other women who are unable to carry such pregnancies in their own womb.  These surrogate mothers may or may not be related to the biological parents of the babies they carry. In some cases and with applicable binding legal agreements, the surrogate mother and the biological parents may not be known to one another.

How can Bridge Clinic help?

At Bridge Clinic, the aforementioned procedures and other assisted reproductive techniques including sperm banking and sperm donation for the management of male infertility are being done routinely to bring the joy of parenthood to many. Couples requiring such therapies no longer have to travel outside Nigeria to access such treatment because Bridge Clinic (with ISO certification) offers various world-class services in the management of fertility locally in three states. 

Our free attendance forums are a great opportunity to speak to our fertility specialists and counsellors about overcoming conception challenges. Join us https://www.thebridgeclinic.com/patient-care/promotions-campaigns/welcome-forum to find out more.

Image credit: Google

By Dr. Oluwatosin Ogunjimi, Consultant Gynaecologist

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