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A baby's fingers grasps an adult's finger.

A Chinese woman surnamed Lin who paid 450,000 yuan ($69,200) for a baby delivered by a surrogate Cambodian mother now must face the uncertainty of her new son's life, as it was revealed upon returning to China that the child is suffering from brain atrophy.

Lin, a single mother, has thus far had to pay over 2 million yuan in medical treatment for her son, Chinese news outlet reported. What's worse, in a country where "any form of surrogacy" is normally suppressed, there would be little to no chance for Lin to obtain legal support.

After the lifting of China's old one-child policy, a sharp increase in the number of older Chinese couples experiencing infertility turned many to assisted reproductive technology or surrogacy. While surrogacy remains illegal in China, resorting to surrogacy mothers in other countries has become an increasingly popular solution for Chinese women who cannot conceive. 

Cambodia is a major target country among Chinese women seeking surrogate mothers due to the relatively lower costs and friendly legal environment. But Cambodia has recently tightened its regulations on surrogacy,...