lgbtq faMILY oPTIONS
There are many ways to grow a family. We will help you find the one that’s best for you.
Northwestern Medicine Center for Fertility and Reproductive Medicine is a successful fertility program offering comprehensive services in downtown Chicago, Highland Park and Oakbrook Terrace for all individuals and couples who need help growing their families. Our faculty and staff provide an inclusive and supportive environment for all patients undergoing fertility treatment, regardless of gender, sexual orientation or marital status.
Same-Sex Couples: Your Path to Parenthood
We offer a full array of options for same-sex couples, including:
Our team of board-certified reproductive endocrinology and infertility specialists, supported by a compassionate staff, will explain the treatment process, order evaluation tests, and answer all of your questions. Pregnancy success rates at our clinic are well above the national average, and the clinic meets or exceeds the highest professional standards in the field, as set by The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM).
Donor sperm, donor eggs and gestational carriers are selected through reputable, nationwide organizations that follow ASRM and FDA guidelines. You may also choose an egg or sperm donor or gestational carrier from a different organization. Talk to your care team to learn more about this option.
Lesbian Women and Couples
Lesbian women and couples may undergo treatment with intrauterine insemination (IUI). This process involves placing donor sperm directly into the uterus, which can maximize your chances of getting pregnant. IUI is a relatively simple treatment that can be performed with or without the patient taking hormone medications.
Some female couples desire that both partners are physically involved in conception. In that case, through reciprocal in vitro fertilization (IVF), one partner’s eggs can be fertilized with donor sperm and then transferred into the other partner’s uterus.
Gay Men and Couples
Gay men and couples may choose to work with a gestational carrier and an egg donor to help them grow their families through IVF. We work with several egg donor and gestational carrier agencies that can help you locate an egg donor or a surrogate. We will then work with the identified agency to coordinate treatment with all parties.
Transgender Individuals and Couples
Transgender individuals and couples may also want to consider IUI, IVF and/or the use of a donor or gestational carrier, if needed. Transgender individuals considering initiating hormone treatments or surgical removal of their ovaries or testes can consult with us about options for preserving their fertility prior to surgery or hormone therapy, as those treatments could prevent you from being able to have a biological child in the future.
When You Know the Donor or Gestational Carrier
If you choose to use a donor or gestational carrier who is a family member or friend, there are several considerations to keep in mind:
Growing your family is a momentous and emotional journey. But it can also be a difficult one, as it may take longer than hoped or be filled with uncertainties.
To provide emotional support through the process, our Center has three clinical psychologists for our patients. We invite you to contact them any time throughout your treatment when you feel you could benefit from mental health care.
FERTILITY TREATMENT OPTIONS FOR LGBTQ PATIENTS
Eve Feinberg, MD, and Angela Lawson, PhD