Advanced Techniques

Primo Vision™ Embryo development time lapse-imaging

Time Lapse monitoring provides 24/7 monitoring of your embryos whilst they are in culture. Photos of the embryos are taken every few minutes and these are then linked together to create video sequences showing how your embryos have developed. This provides us with much more detailed information about your embryos than can be gained using standard monitoring. The information can be analysed using specialised computer algorithms which helps the embryology team choose which embryos have the highest potential to implant and therefore result in a pregnancy.

A number of time-lapse systems are available. At Nurture we have specifically selected ‘Primo Vision’ as it can be used in combination with our existing incubators, which we know provide exceptional pregnancy rates. There is no change to your treatment or how your embryos are cared for which is something we feel strongly about.

Given these potential benefits, time-lapse monitoring is particularly useful for patients who have had previous unsuccessful attempts at IVF or experienced one or more miscarriages. It is also useful for those who have had, or are expected to have, any compromise in the quality of their embryos, which will reduce their chance to implant.

Blastocyst culture

At Nurture Fertility we offer embryo transfer 7 days a week. Embryos are usually transferred anytime between day 2 and day 5. Blastocyst transfer is a selection tool which helps us to identify the strongest embryo/s for transfer and is a good technique to use where more good quality embryos have developed by day 3 than are needed for transfer.

Assisted Hatching

The success of IVF depends on many events, and implantation is one of the final hurdles. For successful implantation, the embryo must escape or “hatch” out of its outer shell (the zona pellucida). Once the embryo has hatched, it can make physical contact with the lining of the womb (the endometrium) and implantation can begin. If the embryo is unable to hatch from its zona pellucida, it won’t be able to implant successfully in the wall of the uterus.

Assisted hatching is a physical or chemical treatment carried out immediately before embryo transfer. It weakens an area of the zona pellucida with the aim of improving the chances of implantation. At Nurture Fertility we use a laser, as it is considered to be the safest and most accurate method.

We’d recommend assisted hatching in patients who meet one or more of the following criteria. We’ll also consider requests from patients who don’t, on a case-by-case basis:

  • Repeated implantation failure (at least two previous transfers)
  • Women who are 37 years and older
  • Patients undergoing frozen embryo transfer
  • Embryos with a thickened zona pellucida

You can read more in our Assisted Hatching patient information leaflet (Link to download).

Endometrial scratch

It is shown in recent studies that an ‘endometrial scratch’ may  improve implantation rates in patients who have had multiple failed IVF cycles, despite good quality embryos. Embryo  implantation can often fail due to poor ‘endometrial receptivity’, and an endometrial scratch may help to improve the womb lining’s receptivity to an embryo. It’s a straightforward appointment. There is an ultrasound scan, and then a procedure similar to a smear test, where a catheter is inserted into the womb through the cervix, and used to lightly mark the womb lining. It’s suitable for patients trying to conceive in a natural cycle, as well as patients going through IVF cycles.

EmbryoGlue™

Hyaluranon is a naturally occurring substance present in follicles, tubes and cavity of the womb. Its effect is to make the fluid in these areas more viscous (sticky) and to encourage implantation of embryos.

HBA & PICSI

The HBA test can be used to establish the percentage of mature sperm in a semen sample. If the level of mature sperm in the sperm sample is <80%, we would be recommended that PICSI treatment is performed. This is a modification to the standard ICSI procedure which involves the identification of mature sperm usually a specialised culture dish and the subsequent selection of those sperm for injection