INTRACYTOPLASMIC SPERM INJECTION (ICSI)
This technique is used when the cause of infertility is due to an issue with the sperms. In this process the sperm being injected directly into the egg.
When is it recommended?
This technique is recommended when:
- The male partner has very low sperm count.
- The sperm are abnormally shaped (poor morphology).
- The sperms don’t move normally (poor motility).
- Where few or no eggs were fertilized during previous cycle of IVF treatment.
- A man has undergone a vasectomyor has a blockage that prevents sperm reaching the ejaculate, or because of an extremely low sperm count. In these cases, the sperms are extracted surgically from testicles or epididymis. A narrow tube inside the scrotum where sperm are stored and matured.
How is it done?
The process is the same as IVF. The only difference is that instead of mixing the sperm with the eggs and leaving them to fertilize, an experienced embryologist will inject a single sperm into the egg. This increases the chance of fertilization by bypassing any problems a sperm may face while entering the egg.
Steps involved in CSI procedure:
- A mature sperm is retrieved in a specialized pipette.
- A delicate and thin needle is used to immobilize and pick a sperm.
- The needle is then used to insert the sperm into the cytoplasm of the egg.
- After injecting the sperm, the needle is carefully removed.
- The next day eggs are checked for fertilization.
How long does the process take?
One cycle of ICSI takes 4 to 6 weeks to complete.Egg and sperm retrieval process may take half a day and will require a half a day. It takes 3 to 5 days for the embryo to mature after which it will be transferred to a woman’s uterus. The embryo can also be transferred the next month or with a fresh cycle.
Are there any risks involved with ICSI?
The chances of birth defect with ICSI are slightly higher than when natural conception occurs. Although chromosomal abnormalities are associated with ICSI, they occur in less than 1% of the children.
There are some chances that eggs, or embryos may get damaged during the process of ICSI.
When ICSI is used along with IVF, the chances of multiple pregnancy increases; 30-35% of conceiving twins and 5%-10% of having triplets.
What is the success rate of ICSI?
Success depends upon the technique of procedure performed, equipment used, sperm and egg quality. On average, 25% of the couples can conceive after one cycle of ICSI.
ICSI has good fertilization rate, it has remains above 80% .