Before implantation in the womb, embryos must hatch out of their shell (called the zona pellucida). Assisted Zona Hatching (AZH) is a technique designed to assist embryos to hatch successfully. It involves creating a small hole in the zona pellucida of the developing embryo following IVF or ICSI, through which the embryo can ‘hatch’. This is performed on the third day following egg collection, immediately prior to embryo transfer. It is usually recommended in women who have had several unsuccessful IVF attempts despite producing good embryos. It is not usually recommended as a first-line treatment as the process can occasionally damage the embryo.
We are totally committed to providing the best medical and scientific services currently available within this field. We do so in an environment of genuine care, warmth and support for couples attending the clinic. Women who are most likely to benefit from assisted hatching are those:
Over 38 years of age
With mild elevations in their day 3 FSH levels
Having repeated failures of ART cycles
With embryos that have abnormal appearing zonae, as determined through close inspection by the embryologists
If performed improperly, creating this window in the zona pellucida can harm rather than help the chance for establishment of a pregnancy. Our embryologists have performed this technique for many years and have found it to improve pregnancy and delivery rates in the poor prognosis patient.