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ICSI procedure is the Intracytoplasmic sperm injection given for spearm-realted infertility problems. It is an Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART), that increases the fertilization phase in IVF procedures with the injection of a single sperm into a mature egg. The egg that is thus fertilized is placed in the fallopian tube of the woman’s uterus.

Regulating, Validating and Reporting ART

Sperm Collection- Different Issues 

  • The sperm cannot be collected through normal masturbation, the sperms are retrieved from the testicle by making an incision
  • In some cases, there might be a block that does not allow the ejaculation of sperms in the male partner
  • Issues in the development of sperms
  • Fewer numbers of sperm in the semen

The Process 

Genetic problems can be screened and testing can be done before going through the ICSI procedure:

  • IVF, that involves ICSI, is done with the use of special tool
  • The embryologist chooses an individual sperm
  • A needle is used for injecting the sperm through the outer coating of the egg and into the cytoplasm
  • Generally, most of the eggs that are injected with the sperm in this way, get fertilized
  • However, it is important that the female partner be given medications before retrieving the eggs
  • She will be closely monitored for about two weeks and the eggs will then be retrieved
  • She will also be injected with FSH or follicle stimulating hormones to stimulate the ovaries to create superovulation (several eggs instead of a single egg).
  • The maturity of the eggs is checked by ultrasound and the dosage will be altered based on the ultrasound results 
  • The eggs are then checked for fertilization and the zygotes or the successfully fertilized eggs that are well developed are chosen.
  • Two to four of the fertilized eggs are placed in the woman's uterus using a catheter. The rest of the embryos can be frozen for later attempts.

When is ICSI Used?

If you are wondering who should be treated with the ICSI procedure, there are no fixed rules regarding cases that need the procedure and those that do not. Many infertility clinics make use of the procedure only in case of severe infertility related to the male factor, whereas some clinics also make use of the procedure for all cases.

Read- Successful ICSI Treatment Story 


ICSI procedure consists of an Intracytoplasmic sperm injection in cases of infertility problems related to the male factor. The procedure is used in cases of low sperm count, low motility etc.

Authored by : Dr Aniruddha Malpani, MD and reviewed by Dr Anjali Malpani.

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