Surrogacy Statistics

Numbers, math, statistics… You either love them or hate them!

No matter how you feel about them they are important for tracking success and can be comforting (or not!) for issues you are interested in. Let’s explore stats on surrogacy and using a gestational carrier!

If you are familiar with surrogacy or have heard about it in the news, I’m sure you’ve heard of Baby M and the legal mess associated with that in 1986. This was the first, well… publicized, knowledge of the use of a surrogate. The CDC submitted their first report to Congress in 1997 titled “Assisted Reproductive Technology Success Rates: National Summary and Fertility Clinic Reports”. That means we are currently 32 years from the first “known” surrogate and 21 years since the first report to Congress on ART success rates. In the grand scheme of things the technology and the opportunity for surrogacy is fairly new. The CDC now has a National ART Surveillance Program to help us regulate and keep track of the stats. “Between 1999 and 2013, about 2% (30,927) of all assisted reproductive technology cycles used a gestational carrier. The number of gestational carrier cycles increased from 727 (1.0%) in 1999 to 3,432 (2.5%) in 2013.” Also, “Approximately 16% of intended parents using a gestational carrier were not US residents.” It will be amazing to see the numbers since the technology and opportunity has increased!

You may be curious as to what the age of those gestational carriers were, according to Fertility and Sterility on Table 1 from 2009-2013, 24.9% under age 30, 33.4% ages 30 to 34, 6.2% ages 35-37, 7% ages 38 to 40, 4% ages 41-43, 2% ages 44 and older with 34.2% of the data missing. Table 1 also shows the number of embryos transferred for ART treatment procedures with 1 embryo transferred at 21.5%, 2 at 60.4%, 3 at 13.6%, and 4 and above 4.6%. It will be fascinating to see how the numbers update 4 to 5 years later as, anecdotally, many carriers and RE’s seem to be changing their preference to single embryo transfer in recent years. Also interesting to look at is how the number of embryos transferred relates to multiple birth numbers and implantation rates. Here are the numbers for 2009-2013 according to Fertility and Sterility on Table 2, implantation rates among transfers for gestational carriers with fresh nondonor ooctyes was 30.3%, resulting in 41.5% live births, 30.3% being multiple live births. This in comparison to implantation rate among transfers for Gestational Carrier with fresh donor ooctyes was 53.3%, resulting in 60.5% live births, 42.5% being multiple live births. The non gestational carrier numbers are slightly lower than those of a gestational carrier.

What about New England?

Here you can find information on individual states and clinic numbers from 2015. The one disclaimer is concerning the limited data related to using a gestational carrier, the information contained in the chart is more related to all different types of ART cycle.

With or without numbers, it is good to compare and see where things stand. We are excited to see when the next report becomes available! Watching trends and preferences change is always exciting, even helping figure out which circumstances are the most successful moving forward.

If you have any more questions about surrogacy, please email us at

A special thank you to Amanda Armstrong, Business Reference Collection Specialist at the Denver Public Library for helping find these statistics.