Ask the Surrogacy Experts

Good morning Bill,
I am unable to conceive using my own eggs, but still want to become a mother. My intention was to use donor eggs, but I also require the use of donor sperm. Therefore, I have come to the conclusion that surrogacy may not be the right avenue for me to pursue after all. I know your area of expertise is in surrogacy, but can you please recommend me to the most successful and most affordable IVF clinics your experience has lead you to discover? — Whitney


Hello Whitney,

If your intention is to carry the pregnancy yourself, and you don’t need a surrogate at all, then there are a multitude of options, and clinics all over the country.

The better IVF clinics in the United States are ranked on the CDC website. Here is the link to their listings. I work with a few clinics near the top of this list, and they are excellent.

If you are looking for an even lower price, I can recommend an IVF program overseas. Which one you choose depends on where you intend to have the embryo transfer.

Be warned: If your embryos are not conceived at a clinic which is also a registered FDA tissue facility, then you won’t be able to bring them into the U.S. The United States has a very strict regulations about any “tissues” coming into the country. All samples need a serology analysis performed on both the egg and sperm donors at the time of the donation, and this analysis must be done at an FDA lab. There are very few FDA facilities overseas — so assume you won’t be able to bring your embryos into the U.S. unless you’ve jumped through some serious hoops.

You can opt to have a testing kit sent to the overseas clinic and ask them to draw the samples (which are then sent to the U.S. lab for testing). The testing kit will cost about $1200 USD for each donor (sperm and egg donors). But I mist admit, even I find that solution to be complicated and time consuming — it’s definitely an option of last resort.

In short… wherever you have your IVF, plan to have the embryo transfer there as well.

Eastern Europe is a great place to receive fertility treatments — the local government and clinics have heavily invested in a medical tourism industry, so they have great facilities and staff training.

In Eastern Europe, I like Ukraine because the medical system is generally ranked higher than neighboring countries — and the local laws are basically the same. I work with a few clinics there, but have had the best success with the Victoria Clinic at the moment. You can also look at Adonis or IVMed — all have had great IVF results for my clients.

If you want to stay closer to home, you can consider clinics in Canada or Mexico. Of the two, I’ve had better results with Canadian clinics.

Southeast Asia is a dangerous place for foreign couples considering fertility tourism. The governments are quite suspicious of foreigners coming for fertility treatments (they always assume that surrogacy is the ultimate purpose). I would stay away for clinics anywhere in the region, although I have worked successfully with a reliable clinic in Malaysia (just not for surrogacy).

I hope this answers your question,

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