How Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) May Help with IVF

Those in Naples, Florida who have experienced previous failed in vitro fertilization (IVF) attempts may find that intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) may help them achieve their goals. The treatment may be used together with IVF to overcome severe male infertility and for those with problems related to sperm production or motility. The procedure involves the direct injection of a single sperm into a mature egg. The resulting embryo is later transferred to the uterus or fallopian tube where it may implant in the uterine wall and develop.

Those who may be candidates for ICSI include anybody who decides to undergo IVF. The procedure requires a healthy mature egg, so most recommendations for ICSI include those who are affected by male infertility problems such as men who have undergone vasectomy reversal and may have high level of sperm antibodies; men with a low sperm count or low sperm motility; men with abnormally shaped sperm; those who have undergone previous IVF cycles without success; and men with a blockage in the reproductive tract preventing sperm from escaping. Those interested in ICSI or IVF should first consult a fertility specialist in the Naples area to determine whether these procedures may be right for them.

As with IVF, the woman's ovaries are stimulated using fertility medications to produce several mature eggs when undergoing ICSI. Eggs are then aspirated during a transvaginal ultrasound-guided egg aspiration procedure. The sperm is then retrieved from the male and the semen sample is prepared by separating live sperm from debris and dead sperm. Only healthy, normal sperm are used. The specialist then collects a single sperm in a tiny, hollow needle and inserts it into the outer membrane of the egg. The sperm is gently expelled into the cytoplasm of the egg. The needle is removed and about three days later the eggs are checked for fertilization. The resulting embryo is then implanted in the uterus where it may implant in the uterine wall and develop.

As with any procedure, there are certain risks involved with ICSI. There may be damage to the egg from the needle used to inject the sperm and the egg may not grow into an embryo even after it is injected with the sperm. The success rate with ICSI may be no higher than with IVF. Birth defects resulting from ICSI are rare, but couples should be made aware of them and discuss them with a fertility specialist in the Naples area. Some defects associated with ICSI include Beckwith-Wiedmann syndrome, Angelman syndrome, Hypospadias and sex chromosome abnormalities. What's more, boys who are conceived with ICSI may face infertility problems later as adults.

Most insurance does not cover the cost of ICSI, but patients should speak with a fertility specialist as well as their insurance company for clarification. This procedure may add an additional $1,200 to $1,800 to the total cost of IVF and these costs do not include possible costs required to retrieve sperm from the male donor or male partner.

Learn more about intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) in Naples, Florida.

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