Intracytoplasmic sperm injection or its acronym ICSI is performed as part of Vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure in which a single sperm is injected directly into an egg; thus the sperm and egg involved with normal fertilization are bypassed. ICSI dictates that a woman needs to undergo an IVF cycle so that eggs can be obtained for insemination.
ICSI is one of the most common successful forms of treatment for men who are infertile as it needs just 1 sperm which is injected directly into the egg. The fertilized egg is then transferred into the woman’s womb.
- When the man has a very low sperm count
- A high percentage of abnormally shaped or slow sperm
- Previous vasectomy
- A need to use frozen sperm that is not of the best quality.
- Problems with getting an erection and ejaculating.
- A complete absence of sperm in the ejaculate due to obstruction or defective sperm production
- Testicular cancer patients with semen samples frozen prior to treatment.
- Decreased sperm motility, including totally immotile sperm
There are basically 10 steps to ICSI which includes the following:
- The female partner will go through an IVF cycle of ovary stimulation, taking carefully timed fertility medications to produce and mature a number of eggs.
- The mature egg is retrieved and it is held with a specialized pipette.
- Then the sperm is collected from the male partner.
- The sperm sample may be treated to ensure that the most active and healthy sperm are selected for ICSI.
- A very delicate, sharp, and hollow needle is used to immobilize and pick up a single sperm.
- The needle is then carefully inserted through the shell of the egg and into the cytoplasm of the egg.
- The sperm is then injected into the cytoplasm, and the needle is carefully removed.
- The eggs are checked the following day for evidence of normal fertilization.
- Once the resulting embryos have been incubated in the lab for a few days, one or two will be placed in the woman’s uterus during the embryo transfer procedure.
- About 12 days after the transfer, we will administer a pregnancy test. If it is positive, a 2nd test will be scheduled within a week’s time. An ultrasound will be scheduled 2-3 weeks later after 2 positive tests.