What Is ICSI Treatment?

The technique of injecting the sperm cell into the cytoplasm of the egg is known as ICSI Treatment (Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection). This treatment is a specialized form of In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) that is used for the treatment of severe cases of male-factor infertility. ICSI treatment involves the injection of a single sperm directly into a mature egg. This treatment is performed in parallel with IVF where after suitable stimulation the retrieved eggs from a woman are mixed with the partner’s sperm.

When Is ICSI Treatment Beneficial?

During ICSI treatment the sperm doesn’t have to travel to the egg or penetrate the outer layers of the egg.

Your doctor may recommend ICSI if there is any difficulty in achieving fertilization due to male infertility factors. The factors include:

Low sperm count
Poor sperm motility
Decreased ability of sperm to penetrate into the egg
Previous unsuccessful IVF procedure

How Is ICSI Treatment Performed?

As with standard IVF treatment, you will be given fertility drugs to stimulate your ovaries to develop several mature eggs for fertilization. When your eggs are ready for a collection they will be retrieved through a short outpatient procedure. The collected eggs are used immediately or frozen and used later on.

Meanwhile, the sperms are collected from the semen sample of the male partner. These sperms are washed and a single best sperm is chosen.

This sperm is injected carefully into the cytoplasm of the egg by using very fine needles. The entire procedure of fertilization is carried out under a very powerful microscope.

This fertilized egg is then placed in the incubator. Such an egg begins to show signs of fertilization after 24 hrs. The egg continues to divide and form an embryo.

When the embryo is 3 days old having 8 cells, it is ready to be transferred to the uterus. Or the transfer may be done on day 5 and is called a Blastocyst transfer.

If you’re just having one embryo transferred, having a blastocyst transfer can improve your chances of a successful, healthy, single baby. If all goes well, an embryo will attach to your uterus wall and continue to grow to become your baby. After about two weeks, you will be able to take a pregnancy test.


What is ICSI intracytoplasmic sperm injection and why is it used?

Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection is performed as an additional part of an IVF treatment cycle where a single sperm is injected into each egg to assist fertilisation using very fine micro-manipulation equipment. In most cases, ICSI can be used to overcome severe male infertility.

How is ICSI different from IVF?

The key difference between IVF and ICSI is how the sperm fertilizes the egg. In IVF, the egg and sperm (of which there are many) are left in a laboratory dish to fertilize on their own. In ICSI, the selected sperm is directly injected into the egg.

Is ICSI more successful than IVF?

And they’re in good company. New Scientist reports that a recent study revealed that ICSI boasts a higher pregnancy success rate.

How many sperm are needed for ICSI?

In theory, one sperm is all that is needed to fertilise an egg and achieve a successful pregnancy using ICSI technique.

Is ICSI treatment painful?

The procedure allows a fertility specialist to obtain sperm from the testicles using a fine needle. Although needle aspiration is a straightforward procedure performed under anaesthesia, it does present a slight risk of pain and swelling. In most cases, it results in minimal discomfort.

When is intracytoplasmic sperm injection used?

ICSI is used to treat severe male infertility, as when little or no sperm are ejaculated in the semen. Immature sperm collected from the testicles usually can’t move about and are more likely to fertilize an egg through this.