ICSI success rates?
42 Replies
waiting4ababy - January 1


Thank you so much for your response, My husband and I were both very happy with the information that you supplied. Some time it makes you wonder why all that is not communicated by the doctor espeacially after spending so much money and getting a negative result that info would have been soothing to hear. But at any rate I am glad you shared all that with us. I now have one more question to ask of you! You may not even know about it which is fine but I thought I would throw it out there! We obviously know that we are going to have to do IVF again which we decided will be in July of this next year, But I decided to take Ovulex Just for what the heck purposes......Do you think that is good,bad? Or do you think I should stop taking it due to starting a new cycle of IVF soon.....I just don't know what to think about it or if it is even worth it due to the fact that we need fertilization help with ICSI anyways. Let me know what your thoughts are if there are any...much thanks!

Happy New Year!!!!


Dr Smith - January 2

Ovulex is a herbal blend. As with most homeopathic remedies, the efficacy of Ovulex has not been demonstrated in controlled scientific studies. Ovulex has not been approved as a treatment for infertility by the FDA in the U.S. and the website provides this disclaimer so they won't get sued for false advertising:

"The statements and products shown on this website have not been evaluated by the US Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Those seeking treatment for a specific disease should consult a qualified integrative physician prior to using our products if possible. Product should be taken as part of a healthy lifestyle and individual results may vary. The individuals shown are paid models, and not necessarily Selmedica Healthcare customers. All of the testimonial statements are genuine. The experience of the customers who have submitted these testimonials are unique and do not guarantee or predict any outcome. These customers were compensated for their testimonials with free product. Product should be taken as part of a healthy lifestyle and individual results may vary."

The pictures on the website are models. The people providing testimonials were paid. I'd save you money for your next IVF cycle.

Best of luck.


Dr Smith - January 27

I think you should proceed with IVF and and use ICSI to achieve fertilization. With sperm parameters as low as you describe, there is a significant chance of decreased or failed fertilization if conventional IVF (just putting sperm with the eggs in a dish) is used. ICSI, where the sperm are picked up and injected directly into the eggs one-by-one, has been used as a successful treatment when the number of sperm and/or the sperm motility is low (as in your case).


Jami - February 4

Dear Doc:

My husband and I just went to retreival using an egg donor. I am 42 and my husband has a blockage.
We had the urologist do a testicular aspriation.
They retreived 11 eggs from our donor.
7 matured.
4 fertilized.

1 - 2 cell division
2 - 3 cell division
1 - 4 cell division

My transfer is tomorrow. (Dav 3).

What is my percentage of getting pregnant?


Dr Smith - February 6

Impossible to say, because the embryos were transferred on Day 3, before their developmental potential was known. In cases that require the use of testicular sperm, a higher than usually number of embryos stop growing before they reach the blastocyst stage. If they don't reach the blastocyst stage, they can't implant. Sorry, but there is just not enough information to assess your chances. Hang in their.


jeru - March 2

Dear Dr,
I am 28 and my husband is 30. My hb has low sperm count of 1.2 millions and the motility rating A:0%, B:30%, C:10%, D:60%. So he doesnt have the best motile cells. It was a surprise for us, bcos he has a very good habits. and good pedigree.

We will do ICSI. My cycles are regular and i am ovulating on every cycle.

What is the chances for getting pregnant based on our age and other factors?


chhaya kansara - April 6

Dr. Smith,

i had icsi in 2000.At that time Three embroys were transfered on day 3, but unfortunately i could not concive.

My husband has problem in getting sperm test ,the reason is insuficient fluid coming out after masterbution. By electrical ejeculation test was carried out and was advised to go for icsi.

in the icsi 3 embroys were transfered.

Now i am planing to have icsi . My age is 41 and my husband is 43. As per the 3D sonography i have febroids in the utrus and is advised to remove them first by mini operation.

Kindly advise in the matter please.


Dr Smith - April 6

I think your chances of a successful pregnancy are pretty low. Partly due to the sperm situation, but mostly due to your age. At 41, the vast majority of your eggs are chromosomally abnormal. In order to have a reasonable chance of success, you would need to produce at least of 10-12 eggs on the stimulated cycle. I would not recommend proceeding to egg retrieval if there are less than 10 follicles developing during the stimulation. Because of the contributing sperm problem which will result in decreased fertilization and fewer embryos reaching the blastocyst stage, using donated eggs (following removal of the fibroids) would give you the best chance of success.

Sorry. I'm sure that's not what you want to hear, but that's my honest opinion.


JaneX - April 26

My Husband and I had a successful first round of IVF using ICSI and had a baby that is now 7 months old. We are going to try again. I want to know if our chances increase because our first round was successful.


Dr Smith - April 26

Yes, there is some evidence to suggest that a recent succssful pregnancy will increase the chances of a subsequent pregnancy. The actual percentage increase will depend on many things that are specific to your individual case and are not easily qualtified. Yes, on the whole, you have a better chance this time around.


JaneX - April 29

Thank you for your prompt and helpful reply. It makes me feel a little more positive going in - it can be so overwelming at times that anything to give you extra boast helps.



Dr Smith - May 2

Well, it is a bit of a puzzle. If the ICSI procedure was not performed properly (i.e. the sperm was not actually injected into the egg), then that would explain the results. However, ICSI's been around for a long time and most experienced embryologists are very good at it, so I think that's a long shot.

Alternatively, if the stimulation was not long enough (i.e. a minimum of 9 days) or a significant number of follicles were too small at the time of retrieval (i.e. <18 mm), the eggs may not have had sufficient time in the follicles to undergo cytoplasmic maturation. Although the 13 eggs appeared mature (as defined by having ejected the first polar body), they may not have been cytoplasmically mature. Incomplete cytoplasmic maturation can lead to failed fertilization following ICSI. The eggs fail to "activate" following the sperm injection. This sems the most likely explanation in view of your previous fertilization results.


Dr Smith - May 3

These notations are embryology shorthand.

2PN = two pronuclei, means a normally fertilized egg observed on Day 1 of development. 1 or >2 PN is abnormal.

2PB = two polar bodies, means the egg was activated by the sperm injection.

M2 = Metaphase II, means the egg is at the appropriate stage of maturity for fertilization.

Lyse = the egg did not survive the ICSI process, the egg plasma membrane did not heal after the sperm injection and the cell "lysed" (blew up).


Shutterbug - May 3

Thanks so much for your assistance.


karystos - August 17

Dr. I am very concerned:
I did ICSI with 17 eggs retrieved. 11 fertilized and on day 2 they tell me they will do a day 3 transfer. I was hoping for a blast stage...I don't understand with so many embies still dividing, why they wouldn't wait it out a litte. My first ivf they did it on day 4 and my first fet they implanted two blasts which resulted in a chemical pregnancy. So does this mean that my embies are bad quality? This is my last shot at ivf and I am quickly losing hope. Your opinion?


Red - August 17

Karystos~I see you posted to this site and this dr. is gone. Post this to Dr. Jacobs on Fertility 101 and he'll reply tomorrow morning (usually). Take care and remember to breathe ;)!



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