Introduction to the Embryology Lab
In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF):
The eggs and sperm are placed together (conventional insemination of oocytes) and the process of fertilization (penetration of egg by the sperm and union of genetic material of the sperm and egg) is left to nature.
Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI):
The cells surrounding the egg are removed (a procedure called stripping); a single sperm is picked up into a delicate glass pipette and injected into an egg. ICSI is employed for couples with sperm related abnormalities, but is also recommended for couples who are at an increased risk for fertilization failure (e.g. those with unexplained infertility and for women of advanced age).
Assisted hatching is a laser guided procedure performed by an embryologist that softens the outer lining of the embryo to facilitate hatching. This procedure is routinely performed on all cycles using frozen embryos.