The only difference between an ICSI cycle and an IVF cycle is the method used to introduce the eggs and sperm. Once eggs have been fertilised the process is the same as a conventional IVF cycle. 

ICSI can be used to overcome certain male fertility issues. These include:

  • A low sperm count or for sperm that have decreased motility
  • For men who require a surgical procedure to retrieve sperm. e.g. after a vasectomy or for men who have difficulty producing semen. as can occur with certain anatomical conditions.
  • For men who have previously undertaken treatment but where conventional IVF has not resulted in fertilisation.

Additionally ICSI is used when frozen eggs are used in treatment.

How is ICSI performed?

With IVF, the sperm and egg are placed in a dish, allowing the sperm to swim to the egg to achieve fertilisation. With ICSI each mature egg has a sperm injected into it. 

Not all eggs collected will be mature.  Only mature eggs can fertilise and we normally expect around 90% of eggs collected to be mature however this varies from patient to patient.