In vitro fertilization, or IVF, has one of the highest success rates among fertility treatments. However, that doesn’t mean that all patients can expect to have success on their first round of treatment. For some, IVF alone is not enough to address the fertility issues that make it difficult to conceive.
At Arizona Associates for Reproductive Health, we frequently perform IVF alongside other fertility techniques to increase the likelihood of a successful treatment for our Scottsdale, AZ, and Gilbert, AZ, patients. IVF with ICSI is one treatment plan that can be beneficial for a select group of patients.
ICSI stands for intracytoplasmic sperm injection. This technique may be used during some IVF procedures. Traditionally, after retrieving eggs for IVF treatment, sperm are placed in a petri dish with each collected egg. The hope is that a sperm will enter the egg on its own and fertilize it.
When ICSI is used, an embryologist takes a single collected sperm and actually injects it directly into the collected egg. This way, the sperm does not need to travel into the egg to fertilize it. ICSI does not guarantee that an egg will be fertilized, but it does significantly increase the chance of fertilization.
Many patients find success with traditional IVF treatment, so ICSI is not always recommended. However, in certain circumstances, ICSI may be the best way to increase IVF success rates for our patients. Patients who may be considered ideal candidates for IVF with ICSI include:
From the standpoint of our patients, ICSI really does not alter the IVF process. As with traditional IVF, IVF with ICSI will take place in multiple stages.
First, we will use fertility medication to stimulate the ovaries and encourage egg production. After ovulation, we will schedule egg retrieval to collect mature eggs. Sperm will be introduced to collected eggs using the ICSI technique. Since this part of treatment takes place in our laboratory, the patient’s experience does not alter whether the ICSI technique is used or not.
Within a few days, we will evaluate all viable embryos (those eggs that have been successfully fertilized). In most cases, our patients freeze their embryos on day 5 or 6 for future use. We may also transfer fresh embryos.
The doctors at Arizona Associates for Reproductive Medicine would be honored to be a part of your family planning. To learn more about IVF with ICSI, or the many other fertility treatments offered at our clinic, send us a message at your earliest convenience. You can also reach out to our team of fertility specialists by calling (623) 469-3992. We serve patients in Gilbert, Scottsdale, and other areas of Arizona.