We can perform assisted hatching with the most advanced laser equipment available. AHA may increase the pregnancy chance in some women.
The oocyte is surrounded by a ‘shell’ called the zona pellucida. The first cell divisions take place inside this shell. When the embryo reaches the blastocyst stage, it must ‘hatch’ out through the shell in order to be able to implant in the endometrium in the uterus.
It has been theorised that some embryos fail to hatch and therefore do not develop into pregnancies. For this reason, it may in some situations increase the pregnancy chance if the hatching process is assisted by weakening the shell. This may be done by making very tiny holes in the shell by a laser beam, so-called ‘assisted hatching’.
The Cochrane Library is an independent international organisation that evaluates the scientific evidence for many types of treatment. In the most recent review of assisted hatching the conclusion is:
Assisted hatching is a technique sometimes used for IVF (in vitro fertilisation) and similar procedures. It in- volves thinning the coat surrounding a fertilised egg, or making a hole in it. This may improve the chances of the embryo attaching to the womb so that pregnancy can begin. The review of trials found some evidence that assisted hatching may increase the chance of pregnancy beginning in women for whom IVF has been repeatedly unsuccessful, and possibly in older women. However, the reported increase in the multiple preg- nancy rate is of concern and further studies are needed.
Watch this video to see how assisted hatching is performed in our Lab.
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