Laser Assisted Hatching is a process where a low energy laser beam is used to break the outer layer of the Zona Pellucida (the outer layer or shell that surrounds an embryo). The main purpose of laser assisted hatching is to allow the embryo to hatch more easily from its outer layer or shell. All pregnancies must result in successful hatching, whether naturally occurring or as a result of any assisted hatching technique such as in-vitro fertilization to enable embryos to implant in the lining of the uterus for further fertilization process. The Zona plays an important vital role in fertilization process as only one sperm can perforate the Zona and fuse with the egg for successful fertilization. The laser used to break the outer layer shell of the embryo is non-contact which means that embryo is not in direct contact with laser. The opening of embryo is increased with the help of laser. The whole procedure is carried out with latest technologies thorough precision and delicacy which positively improves and ramps up pregnancy rates among women.
Laser Assisted hatching involves considerably less time and protects the embryo from toxic chemicals so that the potential effect of these factors reduces and the stress placed upon the embryo during the whole process. In some cases, outer layer of the Zona Pellucida is abnormally thick or hardened with the freezing and thawing process. The possibility of the embryo to attaching or implanting into the wall of the uterus directly depends on the less difficulty faced by the embryo during hatching. Pregnancy cannot successfully happen unless the embryo hatches and implants and Laser Assisted Hatching can play a vital role in achieving these essential steps.
At the SCI Healthcare and SCI IVF Hospital of New Delhi, laser assisted hatching is offered and recommended for frozen embryo transfers by Dr Shivani Sachdev Gour (one of the best gynecologists and infertility specialist based in Delhi).
Who is recommended for Laser Assisted Hatching?
Recent research showed that women who have undergone repeated unsuccessful IVF treatments can increase their chances of a successful pregnancy with Laser Assisted Hatching procedure. But Laser Assisted Hatching can be helpful for any patient and it is most likely to be best suited for women:
- Who are older than 37 years of age thus produce eggs with a harder Zona Pellucida.
- With a high Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) level early in their cycle.
- Who have a tendency to produce a harder or thicker Zona Pellucida
- Who have frozen embryo transfer
- Who have poor embryo quality
- Who have mild elevations in their day 3 FSH levels
Advantages of laser-assisted hatching
A Laser Assisted Hatching considered being the best to other forms of assisted hatching due to the below reasons:
- Exact and fast control over drilling of the shell opening
- Minimal handling of the embryo during the procedure
- It is more safe procedure, with no negative effects on the embryo
- Assisted hatching may be clinically useful in patients with a poor prognosis, including those with two failed IVF cycles and poor embryo quality and older women than 38 years of age. At SCI Healthcare and SCI IVF Hospital and Multi-specialty Center, your doctor can further guide you to see if assisted hatching may optimize your IVF outcome.