Wondering what disqualifies from donating eggs or being a surrogate? Let us guide you through the process and get all your questions answered. Learn more now. 

Common Disqualifying Factors for Egg Donation or Surrogacy

Lots of women want to become egg donors or gestational surrogates. Here at Extraordinary Conceptions, we are incredibly grateful for these women! Without the altruistic nature and giving heart of “wannabee” donors and surrogates, we wouldn’t be able to help as many families dealing with infertility. 

While we wish that we could match every hopeful egg donor or surrogate with a family, that is unfortunately not the case. Due to the complex nature of fertility treatments and childbearing, there are several hard-and-fast rules in place about who can and cannot become egg donors or surrogates in North America. Surrogacy and egg donation disqualifiers exist to protect everybody involved in the family-building process: the surrogate and/or donor, Intended Parents, and of course, the coming baby.

If you are hoping to become a surrogate or egg donor for the first time, but are unsure if you are indeed eligible, you’ve come to the right spot. This article will discuss some of the most immutable surrogacy and egg donation disqualifiers and rules. Once you’ve confirmed that you fit all the requirements, we can help you begin your application and start matching with a family.

Do Egg Donors and Surrogates Have the Same Requirements?

No, they do not. While there is some overlap between surrogate and egg donation disqualifiers and requirements, they are not the same as one another. This is because, while both egg donors and surrogates play crucial parts in bringing baby to the world, these roles are very different from each other.

What Disqualifies You From Donating Eggs?

An egg donor is a woman who undergoes a simple procedure to remove her eggs, or oocytes, to another family. She does not carry the baby—her eggs will be implanted into the intended mother, or a surrogate, depending on individual circumstances. 

Here are some of the main egg donation disqualifiers in North America: 

  • Drug and/or Tobacco Use

In order to be eligible for egg donation, you must not smoke, vape, or use any type of recreational drugs. However, tobacco users will be considered eligible once they’ve kicked the habit for over two months.

  • Age

Currently, the age cutoff for egg donation in the US is 29. All egg donors also must be adults over the age of 18. 

  • Weight/BMI

All eligible egg donors have a BMI (Body Mass Index) under 30. 

  • Medical History

Several genetically transmitted and infectious diseases will render you ineligible for egg donation, including HIV. If you have had an STD diagnosis within the last year, you will not be able to become an egg donor yet. 

  • Medications

Women currently taking certain types of hormone therapy or birth control, like Depo Provera, will not be eligible for donation.

  • Lifestyle

Breastfeeding? You’re going to have to wait until your baby has been weaned before you can donate your eggs. 

What Disqualifies You From Being a Surrogate?

A surrogate is a woman who carries the baby of another woman or couple. Typically, a surrogate has no genetic ties to the baby she is carrying.

There are several clear-cut rules surrounding surrogate eligibility and qualification. Here are some of the main surrogacy disqualifying factors in the United States:

  • Age

All eligible surrogates must be between the ages of 21-45. 

  • BMI/Weight

In order to become a surrogate, you must have a BMI below 36. 

  • Childbirth History

All surrogates must have previously given birth (and currently live with their children.) However, if you experienced childbirth more than 8 times, and/or have had more than 5 cesareans, you may not be eligible for surrogacy. 

  • Criminal Record

All surrogates must have a completely clean record, with no previous convictions or felonies. Any adults living in her household (including spouse or partner) must also have a fully clean record. 

  • Financial Circumstances

All surrogates must be financially solvent and not receiving welfare or section 8/HUD.

  • Drug and/or Tobacco Use

All eligible surrogates must be completely drug and tobacco free, and have no history of using either. 

  • Immigration Status

Only US, Canadian and Mexican citizens or permanent residents are eligible to become surrogates in these countries.

  • Mental Health

Many mental illnesses and/or personality disorders are disqualifiers for surrogacy, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, and depression. 

  • Medications

If you are on any medications deemed unsafe for pregnancy (including antidepressants,) you are not eligible to become a surrogate. In some cases, if you can safely wean off your medication (and fit the other requirements,) it is possible to become a surrogate.

Apply to Become a Surrogate or Donor Today!

If you’re an exceptional surrogate or donor who fits all of our requirements, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with the Extraordinary Conceptions team today! We can offer you a helping hand every step along the way, from applying and matching with a family to receiving proper support as you embark on your donor or surrogate journey. We know what an exciting but huge decision this can be and we are ready to hold your hand when you need it. Email [email protected] to chat with our team—we can answer all of your questions and help you get started today.