What Is IMSI?

The Intracytoplasmic Morphologically Selected Sperm Injection (IMSI) is a technique that is used as a part of the In Vitro Fertilisation treatments for infertility. The IMSI treatment involves morphologically injecting a selected sperm into the egg. This sperm selection is carefully performed prior to the commencement of the procedure so as to segregate impaired or abnormal sperms that may be hindering the pregnancy.

Why perform IMSI?

ICSI is performed where doctors find severe male infertility. It is performed parallel to IVF for a better result. But sometimes the process fails. To enhance a positive outcome doctors use a digital high magnification sperm to improve the process of fertilization and embryo development. This procedure is used for couples with poor results in IVF with ICSI.

By using the digital high-magnification of sperm doctors can easily differentiate between normal and abnormal sperms. IMSI enables 6000 times magnification of sperms that will help to identify more accurately and exclude them during the process of fertilizing the egg. The structurally normal sperm is further used during the process of fertilization using the ICSI method. This technique helps to microinject most normal-looking sperms.

This technique is very helpful and ensures a better result than the traditional method of selecting sperms for fertilization. The traditional method assesses abnormalities at around 400 times magnification.

Who is eligible for an IMSI treatment?

The IMSI treatment is usually recommended for men who:

  • Possess a high proportion of abnormally shaped sperm
  • Poor sperm motility
  • Possess very low numbers of sperm in a normal sperm sample
  • Have had a previous history of poor outcomes with previously conducted ICSI treatments

How Does IMSI Work?

IMSI works by examining the sperm cells at an extremely higher than normal magnification (5 times higher than usual lab instruments) and picking out the healthiest looking sperm cells and injecting them individually in the egg.

What Are The Advantages Of IMSI?

Since it is now possible to extract the healthiest, the most motile and the most potent sperm cells it gives us an advantage in increasing the success rates of the fertilizing process.

Risks associated with IMSI

IMSI is referred by doctors when the quality of sperm is severely low. It is also referred with a history of 2 failed ICSI and 3 failed IVF cycles. IMSI is still in its preliminary stage. It is a time-consuming process. It adds up to 1.5 to 5 hours in addition to the IVF process. This is quite an expensive process and mostly not available in all IVF laboratories.