Blastocyst/extended culture is the procedure of culturing embryos to five or six days in a laboratory with the help of a specialised embryo culture media. It provides an advanced technological opportunity for selection of more viable and genetically normal embryos when compared to embryos which are grown in lab for three days.
The implantation rate has always been a limiting factor in vitro fertilization (IVF) and one of the reasons for this has been the practice of transferring day 2 or day 3 embryos to the uterus where only a certain % of these embryos may progress and implant or attach to the uterus. To overcome this problem, there is a continuous approach of transferring more than two embryos into the uterus in most of the patients which may put the patient at the risk of multiple gestations or pregnancies
To overcome the low implantation rate and complications of multiple pregnancies, the new technique of Blastocyst culture is a suitable approach to improve the IVF outcomes and lead a successful live birth. The Advantages of Blastocyst culture and transfer over day 3 embryo transfer are:
- Better embryo selection allows for higher viability and quality
- It generates more competent embryos with respect to chromosomal status
- Transferring Day 5 Blastocyst embryo reflects higher endometrial–embryo synchronous activity when compared to day 3 transfer and is closer to the natural process
- It avoids multiple births as the process is more selective in the choice of embryo, as we usually transfer a single blastocyst on day 5
Does every patient should opt for blastocyst culture and transfer?
Generally, blastocyst transfer is recommended for most of the patients. However, If the patient has retrieved fewer eggs or has a risk of lower fertilization, it is recommended to transfer the embryo at an earlier stage. And, since embryos may not always progress to blastocysts, it may not always be possible to do a patient transfer. Our IVF Access team will provide you an optimum recommendation for a blastocyst transfer option