Intracytoplasmatic sperm injection (ICSI) is a new procedure that allows couples with sperm problems to have IVF treatment. Developed in Belgium in 1992, ICSI is the process of injecting a single sperm into an egg. It is a remarkable procedure since it allows men with only very few sperm to have a chance of having their own children.
Any man that has had consistently poor sperm samples and men that need to have their sperm recovered surgically will always need ICSI.
In the laboratory, the follicle cells are removed from around each egg with an enzyme solution. One by one, the naked eggs are held by gentle suction on a glass holding pipette, and a single sperm is injected. The tiny glass needle containing the sperm is gently pushed through the shell of the egg and the sperm is deposited in the egg cytoplasm.