In about 40% of cases fertilisation would not occur if the sperm and eggs were placed together as in regular IVF. To overcome this, a technique of injecting an individual sperm into the centre of the egg has been developed called Intra-Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) . This technique is carried out by the embryologist using a microscope under high magnification.
There are various indications for carrying out ICSI during IVF treatment. These factors fall broadly into the following groups, however a combination of these is often seen:
- Low sperm number (oligozoospermia)
- Reduced motility or survival of the sperm (asthenozoospermia)
- Low numbers of normal shaped sperm in the sample (teratozoospermia)
- Sperm retrieved from a testicular biopsy
- A high level of antisperm antibodies in the male partner
- Egg abnormailities
- Unexpected failure to fertilise in a previous IVF treatment cycle
Steps involved in ICSI
ICSI is similar to IVF; however 1 additional step is added to the process. The following steps apply:
- Stimulation of the ovaries
- Egg Collection
- ICSI Procedure – injection of a single sperm directly into the egg.
- Fertilisation of the eggs and culture of the embryos
- Embryo Transfer
What is the Success rate for ICSI?
Galway Fertility Clinic has an average positive pregnancy rate of 40% and a take home baby rate of 30%, per ICSI treatment cycle.
Chances of a successful outcome depend primarily on the woman’s age, declining significantly after 41 years of age.