Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is a newprocedure in the field of IVF that helps couples with sperm-related problems to conceive successfully.

This technique was developed in Belgium in the year 1992 and aims to inject a single sperm into an ovulated egg.

This procedure is highly beneficial for couples where men have a low motility count and low sperm count to develop a baby without any complications and stress.

Here are some Frequently Asked Questions on Intracytoplasmic sperm injection:


What Is The Normal Process Of Fertilization During An IVF Cycle?


  • The eggs that are collected from a woman’s ovaries are kept in highly-specialized incubators in our IVF laboratory.
  • After this, the man’s sperm sample is processed thoroughly to identify the strongest and best-swimming sperm that should be used to inseminate the woman’s eggs.
  • The poorly-swimming and dead spermsare discarded. .
  • Since an egg has a thicker outer shell that is enveloped by many follicle cells, an expert Embryologist will insert 30,000to 100,000 sperm for each egg in order to get maximum success rate. This will ensure that at least one of the sperms will fertilize an egg and lead to formation of a healthy foetus, once the zygote is implanted into the womb. The overall fertilisation rate varies between 70 to 100%.

Is My Sperm Strong Enough To Fertilize Our Eggs?


  • When you opt forIVF treatment, your sperm sample will be thoroughly analyzed for count and motility. The sperm will also be scrutinized on parameters like healthy swimming and physical normality.
  • To be able to get success in forming a healthy zygote, a few of your sperms need to be strongly-swimming which will help them penetrate at least one egg.
  • Generally, men with ‘normal’ sperm samples do not ICSI treatment. In case you think you need ICSI, you should consider getting a sperm test done.
  • If your sperm sample comes out as weak, you definitely need ICSI. The final decision on whether IVF or ICSI is required is usually taken on the day of egg retrieval based on the semen and sperm parameters on the crucial day itself.

What Does The ICSI Procedure Involve?


  • If your physician and you have agreed upon ICSI treatment, the laboratory will decide as to how many eggs are to be injected.
  • You can also decide to have only a few eggs injected via ICSI and the other inseminated normally.
  • In the procedure, suction force is applied by a pipette that holds the egg in one place inside a petri-dish.
  • A single sperm is then carefully picked up via a micro-needle that has a very sharp tip. This tip is used to make a small pinhole inside the shell of the egg and the sperm is then pushed gently inside the cytoplasm of the egg and mated with each other.
  • Once this is done, the needle is carefully withdrawn.

Is ICSI A Safe Procedure For Me And Her?


  • Yes! ICSI is very safe in expert hands and medical evidence accumulated over the last 2 decades clearly establishes ICSI to be a safe procedure.
  • Since the procedure is highly complex, some eggs can succumb to the procedure and the injection force, yet fertilization rates and embryo quality is the same if compared to couples who do not opt for ICSI.
  • However, ICSI might have some risks in the resulting baby. Some studies show that children who result from an ICSI procedure might be born with genetic abnormality. This happens in only 2 children per 1000 births in non-ICSI treatment and 8 children per 1000 births in case of ICSI treatment. This is slightly higher rate as compared to normal population but there is a very minimally increased risk or no increase at all compared to similar infertile population hence the increased risk is attributed more to the risk due to infertility per se and not due to the IVF/ICSI procedures.

Who Can I Talk To If I Have Further Questions?

If you think that you might need the ICSI procedure done during your IVF cycle, your Physician will explain to you all the details about the procedure and its possible risks.

The medical staff at our IVF center is highly familiar with the procedure and can give you all the latest information regarding it.

We encourage you to ask as many questions as you can to be assured that all your queries have been answered.