What is ICSI Treatment?
Commonly known as Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, ICSI is a specialized form of In Vitro Fertilization treatment, designed mainly to treat severe male cases of infertility problems. This is the process of injecting of sperm directly into a matured egg.
How Is The ICSI Treatment Carried Out?
The ICSI procedure is, to some extent, the same as the IVF treatment. Alike the IVF procedure, you would be given drugs that stimulate the production of eggs and develop several mature eggs at a time. When you are ready for the collection of eggs, the specialist will give you a local anaesthetic and collect the eggs with an injection into the upper vaginal wall. He would use a fine hollow needle to remove your eggs from the ovary. He may also use an ultrasound to locate the eggs. Likewise, on the other side, your spouse would be undergoing somewhat similar procedure of sperm collection. He may produce a sperm sample by simple ejaculation by his own into a cup on the same day when you are producing the eggs. If there is no sperm found in his semen, the doctor will extract sperm by local anaesthetic either from his Epididymis, which is a process that is known as PESA, or from his testicles with the help of the TESA procedure. Even sometimes, these procedures do not help in semen collection, and then the doctors go for a biopsy of the testicular tissues, where they find sperms attached to it. After the sperm collection is done, it is then frozen for some time. In the next step, the embryologist isolates the sperm in a separate chamber and injects it into your egg. Then, the sample is kept in the incubator for two days, after which, it is found that the fertilized egg has formed a round ball of cells, which is the embryo. Then the same procedure as IVF treatment is followed to transfer back the embryo to your uterus. After about two weeks of the successful transplantation, you may take a pregnancy test to confirm your pregnancy.
Who Can Undergo This Treatment?
ICSI treatment is one advanced procedure of In Vitro Fertilization and shows light in cases when you have almost lost hope due to causes of male infertility. ICSI is such a treatment, which can bring pregnancy where there is zero sperm count detected. In case, you have very low sperm count or other problems like poor morphology of sperm i.e. abnormal shape and or poor motility, which means abnormal movement of the sperm; this treatment can bear fruits. If in previous attempts to get pregnant through IVF treatment, an unexpected low fertilization rate was observed, the experts at the clinic you are visiting may suggest you to go for an ICSI pregnancy. When your spouse cannot ejaculate due to vasectomy or having extremely low sperm production, you can seek help from this treatment procedure, where you can directly extract sperm from the epididymis or the testicles.
What Is the Success Rate of the ICSI Treatment?
The term, fertilization rate, is different from that of pregnancy rate. When used the Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection treatment, the fertilization rate is recorded to be about 70-85% of the sperms injected under this treatment, which is different from pregnancy success rate. Again, the pregnancy success rate by IVF treatment using ICSI technique is also higher than that not using the technique. This has several reasons. The female patients in the treatment are of low age i.e. below 40 and thus fertile than compared to the patient in IVF treatments. As in most cases, ICSI is a procedure to treat male fertility, so it tends to have no complaints with the eggs quantity and quality, which, in turn, increases the success rate of the pregnancy. The success rate may also vary with individual factors like ICSI technique used, skill of the specialist performing the procedure, embryo transfer skills, quality of the lab used and such like.
What Are the Advantages of the Procedure?
- When other options have failed to give a ray of hope of having your own genetic child, you can get positive results from this treatment. As an ICSI treatment result, you would have your own child, born naturally.
- If it is not being possible for your spouse to ejaculate on the same day of your egg formation due to any anxiety, this ICSI treatment can help you collect sperm by other means as well like PESA and TESA and TESE.
- There happens very often that the cause of infertility cannot be identified after many procedures. Under such conditions, an IVF treatment using ICSI techniques have proven results of success.
- Babies born through this treatment does not differ in case of mental or physical growth in comparison to normally conceived and born babies.
What Are the Risk Factors Associated with ICSI Treatment?
Male infertility is mainly associated with chromosomal and other disorders. Men with low sperm count are due to gross chromosomal abnormalities, which have a risk of being transmitted to the egg after fertilization. These chromosomal disorders are likely to gain prominence with the growth of the baby. Male infertility is a genetic disorder, which is most likely has chances to get transmitted to male offspring born from ICSI treatment, which would have avoided in case if the couple would have remained childless. Alike IVF, ICSI treatment may also lead to Multiple Pregnancies, in which, multiple embryos are transferred back to the uterus. Multiple pregnancies are associated with other health risks like low birth weight, premature labour, miscarriage, need for c-section, still birth and other infant health problems.
What Is The Approximate Cost of This Treatment?
ICSI treatment is a more complex and advanced procedure of IVF involving some advanced techniques to extract the sperm in case the male patient is suffering from infertility disorders.
Though ICSI results in more success rates, you must be very sure about the pros and cons of the treatment as well. Getting every possible test done resulting to a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby would be a wise decision, since it is going to cost your baby.