ICSI is also an Assisted Reproductive Technique that is used in cases of male infertility along with IVF. Some even consider it to be a specialized IVF. In IVF, the egg and the sperm are fertilized outside the womb and inserted into the uterus.
But to improve the chances of fertilization, especially when the sperm count is low, ICSI can be used. The success rates of ICSI are known to be the same as IVF as both are used in tandem.
As compared with traditional IVF, ICIS appears to be more successful at helping men who are experiencing male infertility become parents. Some clinics offer ICSI for all infertility patients, regardless of their diagnosis. In the ICSI method, a single sperm is directly injected into a single egg.
WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM ICSI?
ICSI is usually performed in the following cases of male infertility:
ICSI is a procedure that is conducted in laboratories. Here, a single sperm is chosen with the help of a fine glass needle, and the same is injected into the cytoplasm of the egg. This increases the chances of fertilization better than IVF, where a number of sperms are required to fertilize the egg. In the case of ICSI, the sperm is already inserted into the egg, thus negating the chances of penetration which is achieved by the technique.
Before this technique is carried out, stimulation of the ovaries to ensure the maturation of the eggs is also important. Here a large number of oocytes are produced rather than a single egg with the help of medications, which is similar to IVF.
Once the eggs are matured, it has to be retrieved for fertilization with the sperm outside the womb. This procedure is called Follicular Puncture and is done in the laboratory where the matured follicles are collected.
With the matured follicles and best quality sperms selected, ICSI is carried out. The embryos are allowed to be fertilized and cultured in the lab for 3 to 5 days. Once the eggs are fertilized and the embryo is cultured, it is then transferred back into the uterus with the help of a cannula for the embryo to implant itself against the uterus lining for further development. The embryos that are left are vitrified to be used in later cycles avoiding ovarian stimulation.
Your healthcare provider monitors your fertilized egg in the laboratory for signs of successful fertilization following ICSI. It should take a healthy fertilized egg five to six days to divide into cells and form a blastocyst. In order to determine whether you are likely to become pregnant from a blastocyst, your healthcare provider will analyze the blastocyst’s size and the cell mass.
The success rate is approximately around 60-65%.