Tubal ligation, commonly known as having one’s “tubes tied” is a common form of permanent birth control in the United States. While the procedure does boast an impressive success rate at avoiding pregnancy in most instances, the procedure has no impact on a woman’s ability to be a successful surrogate. Here’s why.
In traditional pregnancies, the body will release an egg from the ovary. It will then travel through the fallopian tubes and into the awaiting uterus. Then, if fertilization occurs, the newly created embryo will grow in the uterus.
In gestational surrogacy, a woman graciously lends her uterus to a couple in need through an In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) pregnancy. In these pregnancies, an egg is taken from another woman, either the intended mother or an egg donor, and joined with sperm outside of the body to create an embryo. Later, typically on the third, fifth, or sixth day following embryo creation, the embryo is placed into the uterus of a waiting surrogate.
Since, in gestational surrogacy, the embryo is not introduced to the uterus until it is already formed, there is no need for a fallopian tube to even exist. In fact, a woman could be lacking tubes entirely and still conceive and carry a healthy child through IVF and gestational surrogacy.
Even more interesting is the fact that the woman who supplies the eggs for embryo creation doesn’t have to have fallopian tubes, either. Egg donors and intended mothers can also have their tubes tied and go one to successfully donate eggs to the IVF and surrogacy process. This is because the egg retrieval process removes the eggs from the ovaries before the body releases them into the fallopian tubes on its own.
Ultimately, you can not only be a successful surrogate with tied tubes, but a healthy child could be created, conceived, and carried without a single fallopian tube needed.