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Does assisted hatching improve implantation rate?

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3 fertility expert(s) answered this question

Answer from: Andrew Thomson, FRCPath

Embryologist, Consultant Clinical Embryologist & Laboratory Manager
Centre for Reproduction and Gynaecology Wales (CRGW)
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Again, one of the previous Cochrane reviews found a significant increase in pregnancy and implantation rate if you did Assisted Hatching but it was quite poor quality evidence that didn’t report a live birth rate and once you sort of removed those studies, there was no significance. It’s red lighted by the UK regulator the HFEA to say that there’s no evidence that it improves efficiency or improves outcomes. There is some evidence that it might improve frozen embryo implantation because the way that the embryos are frozen and in a process called vitrification, there is a theory that hard shell left over from your eggs can harden during the freezing process and there by doing assisted hatching, you sort of bypass that reaction but again we’ve done studies here and which have shown no difference so we don’t feel it will necessarily increase your chances of implantation or success.

Answer from: Yacoub Khalaf, Professor

Gynaecologist, Professor of Reproductive Medicine and Surgery at King’s College
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Not and there is no evidence that it does and I stand corrected but I am one of those sad people who spend most of his time with the evidence and that’s why probably I was late for this.

Answer from: George Koustas, DR

Embryologist, Director of Embryology and Quality Manager
Agora Clinic
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Assisting hatching is simply a technique where with the use of a laser we create a tiny tiny hole on the shell that surrounds the embryo. By making that hole, we assist the embryo to escape from that cell, therefore allowing the embryo to implant.
Studies so far have shown that it does not improve implantation rates and then it doesn’t increase the life-birth rates but some clinics do use that tool in a group of patients that have failed IVF cycles. Also assisted hatching is linked with slight increased risk of multiple pregnancies as well as embryo damage.

About this question:

Do assisted hatching embryos implant sooner?

All the procedures used in IVF labs are meant to increase the chances of pregnancy. How about AH – assisted hatching technique?  Is it really helping in implantation?

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