The assisted hatching technique was developed in 1990 by a team led by Dr.
Jacques Cohen at Cornell University in New York. Since then many IVF centres
have adopted this. Although there is some variability in results and technique,
most studies on Assisted Hatching have demonstrated that it improves
implantation rates in certain patients undergoing IVF and/or IVF/ICSI.
Assisted Hatching procedure with Laser technique
What Is Assisted Hatching?
Assisted hatching is a laboratory technique designed to enhance implantation
of embryos generated through in vitro fertilization (IVF). Most people are
familiar with the failure of a cycle which is an unfortunate reality of
assisted reproduction. Even when presumably high quality, fertile eggs are
used, such as in egg donation with surrogates, nearly 40% to half of couples
are still left disappointed each cycle. Since most couples are able to get eggs
and have fertilization, then the question is where does the failure occur? The
answer may be in the implantation phase.
After a fertilized egg is returned to the uterus, several things must
• It must continue to divide and grow (it is now called an embryo).
• The embryo must break out of the zona pellucida (usually called the
zona) which is a hard protein shell that surrounds it.
• The embryo must then burrow into the lining of the uterus (called the
endometrium) and continue to grow there.
Assisted hatching is a laboratory procedure whereby the zona of the early
embryo is mechanically or chemically weakened in a way that assists the embryo
to “hatch” from the zona more easily allowing implantation into the lining of
the uterus. It has been suggested that
making a hole in or thinning this outer layer may help embryos to ‘hatch’,
increasing the chances of the woman becoming pregnant in some cases.
Laser assisted hatching and assisted hatching blastocyst,
assisted egg hatching
For whom is the Assisted Hatching with IVF suitable?
Assisted hatching is thought to be helpful for couples with a
poor prognosis whose embryos are thought to lack sufficient energy to
complete the hatching process.
According to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, assisted
hatching may be indicated for women with advanced maternal age (older than 38),
two or more failed IVF cycles and poor embryo quality. Apart from this Egg
quantity and quality factor and Zona factor – cases with embryos that have a
thick outer shell also gives indication for the use of Assisted Hatching
Because assisted hatching is a difficult technique, the success is
dependent on the embryologist’s experience and technique, it is important to
talk with your fertility clinic about how successful they are with the
Is Assisted Hatching with IVF Safe?
There can be complications from assisted hatching. It is possible to damage
embryos with hatching and lower the pregnancy rates. Therefore, it is essential
that if assisted hatching is done, it must be expertly performed by properly
trained embryologists. In addition, assisted hatching has been associated with
an increased risk of monozygotic (identical) twins.
Views remain mixed as to whether the technique actually improves the chances
of pregnancy, but most agree that it may be helpful in selected groups of
Assisted hatching is done while the embryo is in the laboratory. Before
being transferred back to the womb a hole is made in the outer layer of the
embryo or it is thinned, using acid, laser or mechanical methods. Assisted
Hatching using laser technology is probably the best technique. Laser assisted
hatching is a gentle and safe way to weaken a part of zona pellucida. Several
studies have shown that using a laser is superior to chemical and manual
hatching. Minimal handling of the embryo and delivering fast and exact control
over the drilling of the hole are the advantages of laser assisted hatching.
Embryo assisted hatching and assisted hatching success
Laser assisted hatching is performed prior to the embryos being transferred
back to the uterus.
The actual pregnancy and live birth rates seen in an individual IVF center
or infertility clinic will vary according to the hatching technique used, the
overall quality of the laboratory, the skill of the individual performing the
hatching, the embryo transfer skills of the physician, and other factors.
Assisted hatching of IVF embryos, is an in vitro fertilization lab procedure
that can increase IVF success rates, Ask infertility expert at Rotunda
Fertility Center for complete medical advice for infertile couples.
At Rotunda – The Center for Human
Reproduction, Laser technique is used to perform the assisted hatching
procedure. The team of doctors and embryologist are well adversed with the
latest technology in the field of ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology). You
can contact the doctors at Rotunda clinic at http://www.iwannagetpregnant.com
or at you can have a look at their Assisted Hatching procedure at http://www.rotunda.co.in
or simply give a call on +91 22 2655 2000 / 2640 5000 and they will be
ready to help you.
Our Clinics in Mumbai
Rotunda – The Center For Human