Let a child be!

The EmbryLife Center offers a whole range of services for diagnostics and treatment of both female and male infertility. Our specialists use American IVF technology: we work according to guidelines that have shown proven results in thousands of US patients. This technology has implicit excellent laboratory equipment capabilities, in strict compliance with ASRM (American Society for Reproductive Medicine) and ESHRE (European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology) requirements.

EmbryLife is the only clinic in Russia that has been accredited by the American Association of Embryologists.

(812) 327-50-50

35 Sadovaya St., St. Petersburg, Russia


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What does ICSI mean?

ICSI is Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection. Unlike IVF, the abbreviation ICSI was historically not translated but transcribed into Russian. Otherwise, it would be called “ИЦИС” [ITsIS] in Russian...In some cases, the spermatozoa are not capable of fertilization, even when located in immediate proximity to the ovum during the IVF procedure. No fertilization is often the case if the sperm analysis parameters are below normal. Therefore, micro-manipulations with gametes (ICSI) are the only way to overcome this problem.

ICSI is Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection. Unlike IVF

ICSI technology

After follicular paracentesis, the obtained ova in the culture medium are placed into an incubator for several hours. Then the surrounding cumulus cells are removed to assess the maturity degree of the ovum, as only mature ova may be used for ICSI. The ICSI procedure itself is conducted using a micromanipulator. The mature ovum is attached at one side to a special pipette holder. On the other side, there is a fine needle with a withdrawn immobilized spermatozoon that is injected into the ovum. Each cell is fertilized this way, after which they are placed into a special medium in incubators. 16 to 18 hours later (i.e., the next morning after paracentesis), the fertilization result is assessed.

Indications for ICSI

  • Reduced sperm parameters (oligospermia and/or asthenospermia and/or teratospermia)
  • Azoospermia (no spermatozoa in the ejaculate). In such cases, spermatozoa may be obtained by means of TESA/MESA
  • Immuno-infertility (MAR test results of more than 50%)
  • Use of cryo-preserved sperm with low quantity and/or quality parameters in the cycle
  • Absence or low percentage (less than 50%) of fertilization in prior IVF cycles
  • Patient is older than 39
  • Low number of ova obtained by a woman in response to stimulation
  • Performance of pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD)
  • Donor programs using cryo-preserved ova

ICSI is Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection. Unlike IVF

Selection of the fertilization method

Most of the indications (except for azoospermia and use of frozen ova) are relative. The sperm parameters are extremely variable in healthy men and may sometimes be very low even in men who already have their own children. In the various types of pathology described in the section “Male infertility”, the sperm parameters may be reduced, but still be within the limits suitable for conception. Such sperm is also called subfertile. In combination with concomitant health problems of the woman or low ova quality, the sperm will reduce the probability of getting pregnant.

Therefore, in case of several relative indications for ICSI, a decision on the recommended fertilization method is made on a case-by-case basis, by an embryologist and a fertility specialist in consultation.

Success of the procedure

ICSI ensures that the ovum will connect with a spermatozoon that has been pre-selected according to its reproductive attributes. The probability of getting a good embryo with ICSI is 95%.