Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection(ICSI)

It is a procedure which is done to fertilize an egg by injecting a single sperm directly into the egg. After getting fertilized, the egg will be transferred to the patient’s womb. The procedure ICSI has got major technological developments and success rates are high. Even though only a very few sperms are collected, fertilization will be possible. ICSI is suggested when:

  • Problems are found with sperm morphology, poor motility etc.
  • IVF treatment has failed to achieve the result or low fertilization rate.
  • Donor insemination is not wanted or the sperm count is zero.
  • The male partner is found with problems in erection and ejaculation. This may be due to certain health issues like diabetes, spinal cord injuries etc.
  • The male partner has problems with ejaculating sperm
  • The sperm is collected from the testicle or the sperm reservoir if the male partner has had a vasectomy.

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Both ICSI and IVF are similar in its procedures. The only difference is that in IVF, the fertilization takes place in a dish whereas in ICSI, a selected single sperm is injected directly into each egg. Basically, there are five steps involved in an ICSI procedure:

  1. The mature egg will be kept in a special tube
  2. A hollow needle which is sharp, very delicate will be used to pick up a single sperm.
  3. The needle is then inserted to the egg shell carefully and to the egg cytoplasm.
  4. The needle will be removed after injecting the sperm into the cytoplasm.
  5. Checkups and tests will be continued through the following days to see the evidence of fertilization.

When the fertilization becomes successful, the embryo will be placed in the woman’s uterus using embryo transfer procedure.

ICSI can have the same risks of an IVF treatment. It may increase the risks of multiple pregnancy and hyperstimulation syndrome. Birth defect to the child can also be a risk of ICSI procedure.

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