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Earlier, IVF procedures were done by collecting eggs during the natural menstrual cycles of the woman who wanted to have a baby- it’s known as Natural Cycle IVF. It doesn’t involve any type of ovarian stimulation. Over time, this procedure was replaced by the ovarian stimulation procedures that we currently use; the latter resulted in much higher success rates. Today, some infertility clinics continue to offer IVF procedures with the natural or un-stimulated cycles.

The trend reverses

In the stimulated process, a larger number of embryos can be transferred, and this ups the pregnancy rates. It’s why most clinics prefer to use ovarian stimulation for ICSI in IVF procedures. Today, there seems to be a reversal of this trend and people are now opting for Natural Cycle IVF. Couples are much better informed about the risks of having multiple babies and just prefer to have one.

Of you are going to opt only for a single embryo transfer in your IVF cycle, you don’t need to undergo ovarian stimulation procedures. It’s true that there may be a drop in the chances of success; however you can still go through multiple IVF cycles.

Learn More about Poor Ovarian Response

Natural Cycle ICSI

In Natural Cycle ICSI, no stimulation is used to retrieve the eggs from the female partner. Only a single egg is retrieved per cycle; this is a very simple and natural method which is also very patient-friendly. It’s ideal for women below 35 years of age, though most women above that age choose the ovarian stimulation method in their IVF treatment.

Facts about Natural Cycle IVF

  • It’s a natural or unstimulated cycle in which there are no hyperstimulation problems or the risks of multiple pregnancy
  • Though the success rates of this procedure are comparatively less than that of a stimulated cycle, you may end up benefiting from this treatment
  • In a number of clinics, some couples choose to do IVF without the use of any medications, except for the hCG shot (this triggers ovulation).

Learn More about Natural Cycle IVF

Why opt for natural cycle ICSI?

There are a number of benefits to opting for natural cycle ICSI, such as:

  • The embryo produced can be of a better quality as only one egg is retrieved
  • It’s also more beneficial in implantation
  • If you are an older woman or a poor responder to stimulants and choose this option, The Malpani Infertility Clinic can do the procedure for you
  • If you have the problem of a poor quality embryo post stimulated cycles or if you are unable to take stimulation or fertility medications, you can opt for a natural cycle


Though the chances of success in a stimulated ovarian IVF procedure are much higher in comparison to a natural cycle ICSI, some couples prefer to opt for an un-stimulated procedure as it has a number of benefits.

Not happy with the attention you are getting from your IVF clinic? Need more information? Please send me your medical details by filling in the form at www.drmalpani.com/free-second-opinion so that I can guide you!

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

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