ICSI is a shortened form of intracytoplasmic sperm injection and a part of IVF treatment used to assist couples in their family expansion plan. Introduced by Gianpierro Palermo at Brussels University, the first baby birth with the help of ICSI treatment took place in 1992.

What is ICSI treatment or intracytoplasmic sperm injection?

It is a type of infertility treatment that helps doctors in the IVF treatment procedure. In this treatment, respective doctors use a single healthy sperm to fertilise an egg in the lab. After the completion of the fertilisation process, experts transplant the fertilised egg (embryo) into a female’s uterus to make pregnancy occur.

The entire process of the ICSI treatment is similar to the IVF treatment. There is a slight difference in the fertilisation process. In the IVF treatment, the fertilisation takes place in a dish at the lab. On the other hand, experts pick the sperm from the produced sample and inject it directly into the egg to accelerate fertilisation and ensure pregnancy occurrence.

ICSI treatment procedure

Like other fertility treatments, ICSI treatment follows a process that includes medication, mature egg formation, sperm retrieval, sperm injection into a healthy egg, etc. Doctors recommend it when you have male factor infertility. Here is the complete process of ICSI treatment:

  • Healthy sperm retrieval from the produced semen sample
  • Egg extraction through a surgery
  • Sperm injection with the help of a hollow needle
  • Observation of egg fertilisation and development into an embryo
  • Transplantation of embryo into a female’s uterus

When do you need it

ICSI is an art solution to assist childless couples become parents. Doctors recommend it when you (male partner):

  • Have a lack of sperm due to the testicle blockage
  • Suffer from poor sperm count, shape, and motility
  • Have erectile dysfunction or penile penetration issue
  • Have a high level of antibodies in your semen

Risks associated with ICSI treatment

As per the available scientific research data, there are no severe risks caused by the ICSI treatment procedure. However, you might experience:

  • 2% egg damage during the process
  • The child born through it might have fertility issues like his father

Is ICSI a safe fertility treatment?

Yes, it is a safe treatment procedure to conceive. As per the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, it is completely safe and effective for couples with reproductive health issues caused by male factor infertility. It facilitates IVF treatment and increases the chance of conception for a couple.

Is the ICSI treatment helpful in treating male fertility problems and making a female pregnant?

Yes, it is helpful to treat male infertility and assists females to have a conception. As per a study, this treatment can fertilise approximately 50-80% of eggs. However, you (couples) might experience some egg damage. Some eggs are useless and might not be suitable for future usage. Some of your eggs may not develop into embryos even after this treatment process. And the embryo can stop developing.


ICSI, as a part of IVF treatment, is a highly effective treatment to male infertility. With slight risks, it is helpful in bypassing male factor infertility and making a female pregnant. Your doctor will help you know each point before moving to the execution of this treatment procedure.

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