Psychological and social consequences of surrogacy in surrogate mother and the resulted child: a review study

Document Type : Review Article


1 Assistant professor, Department of Midwifery and Reproductive Health, Nursing and Midwifery Care Research Center, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.

2 PhD Candidate in Reproductive Health, Student Research Committee, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.

3 Instructor, Department of Midwifery and Reproductive Health, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.


Introduction: One of the new assisted reproductive techniques is surrogacy, and the rate of using this technique is rising. However, the psychological and social consequences of this technique have not been thoroughly investigated. Therefore, this review study was performed with aim to investigate these outcomes following surrogacy in surrogate mother and child.
Methods: In this review study, to find the related articles between1990-2018, Persian databases of SID and Magiran and English databases of Pubmed, Scopus, Elsevier, Wiley online library, Web Of Science, and Google Scholar search engine were searched. To access all articles in Persian and English, the Persian keywords including: surrogate mother, mother-child relationship, mother-fetus relationship, relationship, psychological outcome, social outcome and English keywords including Surrogate mother, surrogacy, Maternal -Fetal relationships, mother-child relationships, surrogates' family, bonding, attachment, psychology outcome, social outcome, with all possible combinations of these words were used. From 500 articles, 18 articles were eligible for research and were selected for this study.
Results: The results of various studies indicated that the birth of the child for surrogate mothers and applicant’s family is a stressful phenomenon that can lead to depression in surrogate mother. There was no significant difference between children born as surrogacy and normal children in terms of evolution, psychological and social dimensions. The results of personality tests and psychological variables were normal in most surrogate mothers and no serious psychological harms were observed.
Conclusion: In general, surrogacy is considered to be a positive experience in most mothers. Born children also have a good feeling to their surrogate mothers and have no psychological differences with normal children. Of course, it's important to note that differences in the culture of the countries, their experiences and supportive systems may affect psychological and social consequences of surrogacy.


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