A possible cause of failure of implantation of the embryo in assisted reproductive technologies may be complications occurred in the opening of the embryo (hatching) from the shell. Possible cause – the zona pellucida (outer “shell” of the embryo) is thicker than normal.
Laser hatching is a laboratory procedure that is designed to assist the opening of the embryo.
When can laser-assisted hatching be used?
♦ In women over 38 years old, as they age zona pellucida thickens and becomes firmer.
♦ Patients who have had previous unsuccessful IVF attempts with good quality embryo transfer.
♦ For cryo-embryo transfer cycles, as zona pellucida is known to become more rigid after freezing with subsequent thawing.
♦ Patients with elevated FSH (Follicle-stimulating hormone).
♦ Women with naturally occurring eggs with thick zona pellucida.