Surrogacy After a Failed Embryo Transfer: Is Success Possible?

Author: gs-healthcare



Experiencing a failed embryo transfer is very difficult and discouraging. It can lead you to feel nervous and hesitant to attempt another transfer. These feelings are completely valid and common after a failed transfer, as is feeling guilty and fearful. There are a few things to know when going through a failed transfer, as well as attempting a second or third transfer. 


Was It My Fault?

The most important thing to know after a failed embryo transfer is that it was not your fault. You have already done all you could possibly do by taking your medications and attending your monitoring appointments. Before your transfer, these monitoring appointments confirmed that your body had the optimal conditions to proceed with the embryo transfer – meaning, your hormone levels and uterine lining are at the absolute peak levels for the greatest chance of the embryo “sticking” or implanting. The success rate of implantation is about 60%-70%, that other 30%-40% is entirely up to the embryo, and out of our (and the RE’s) control. By the time you reach transfer day, your odds are as high as they can be for a success, the rest is up to chance. 


Who Can I Turn To For Support?

It is also important to know that after a failed transfer you have the full support from us at GSHC. Our entire team is here to support you, but especially your case manager. She is there to answer your phone call or zoom call when you first get the news, to be your support system as you navigate discontinuing medications, and to be the shoulder to cry on when you are struggling with the bad news and having your first menstrual period. Our GSHC case managers will be with you every step of the way as you navigate through a failed transfer, and to support you however you need her to. You will never be alone in this process.


What About My Intended Parents?

Another aspect of surrogacy that can feel daunting after a failed transfer is informing your intended parents of the failed transfer. You do not have to worry about taking on the responsibility of informing your intended parents of the failed transfer, either the fertility clinic or their case manager here at GSHC will inform them. That way, you do not have to support them or take on the burden of delivering the outcome, their case manager will fully support them as they too cope with the bad news. Our intended parent coordinators do educate intended parents on the science behind a failed transfer, so they understand that it was all up to chance and that you did the absolute best that you could have done. We also support them throughout the next step, just as we support you. Let your case manager know how we can help with the communication with your intended parents afterwards, as at first it can feel confusing while you navigate how you feel and what the next steps are. 


What is Next for Future Embryo Transfers?

When heading into a second or third embryo transfer, it can be a very daunting and nerve-wracking experience as you are not sure what the outcome will be. It is important as you prepare yourself for your next transfer attempt that you tell your case manager if you feel you need a consultation with a psychologist, IVF nurse, fertility doctor, or lawyer. We will ensure that you feel completely ready, both physically and emotionally, before starting your next round of IVF. We will help you stay relaxed and trusting throughout the process of your next IVF transfer. 

With subsequent embryo transfers after a first failed transfer, the rates of success do grow much higher. After two failed transfers, almost all of the transfers have proved to be successful. A third transfer attempt has been noted by the fertility clinics to have a success rate of 80%. In fact, it is so common to have success after a failed transfer (or two), that it is written out in the Gestational Surrogacy Agreement that there will be three embryo transfers before the match between intended parents and surrogate mother is officially broken.

If after your second or third embryo transfer you have any questions related to your contract, your side effects, aftercare, scheduling your blood HCG pregnancy test, or anything else regarding the transfer, please contact your GSHC case manager, your clinic, or your reproductive endocrinologist doctor. If you’re not sure who to contact, go to your case manager first and she will help mediate communication and get your questions and concerns addressed quickly. 

Always remember, you are never alone with any of the surrogacy process as a GSHC surrogate mother, even the difficult parts of the process like a failed transfer. We are with you every step of the way. If you have any questions or concerns about a successful journey or any other aspect of becoming a surrogate, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at any time. Contact GSHC Surrogacy Agency.