IVF is a technique that has gained popularity worldwide to treat infertility. IVF involves various steps. The first step of IVF treatment is to stimulate the ovaries to produce mature eggs. Then, eggs are retrieved from the ovaries, and sperms are bifurcated from the semen sample. The eggs and sperms are mixed for fertilization to form embryos.
Once embryos are formed, some of them are transferred to the uterus for conception. But before this, embryo grading is done to choose the best quality of embryo for a successful IVF cycle. Embryo grading is a process that helps embryologists to determine, the best day of embryo transfer, the quality of embryo to transfer, and the suitable number of embryos to transfer.
Embryo grading is a subjective matter and depends on the discretion of the embryologist to judge the quality of the embryo. It is done on Day 3 (Cleavage stage) and Day 5 (Blastocyst stage) of the fertilization. Experts decide the grading of an embryo based on the appearance of the embryo, the patient’s age, fertility history, and medical history.
Why Embryo Grading is performed?
Dr Shivani Sachdev Gour – the top IVF Specialist Doctor in Delhi explains the following importance for performing embryo grading.
- Embryo grading helps to identify the quality of embryo to transfer. Using the healthiest embryo for conception reduces the chances of IVF process failure.
- It checks whether an embryo has the potential for development or not. For this, all the components of the embryo must examine to ensure successful pregnancy.
How Embryo Grading is done?
Grading is done by the embryologists in the following two stages of embryo development.
- Cleavage Stage: This stage is reached on day 3 of the fertilization. In this stage, the embryo starts dividing (cleaving) into cells. However, the embryo has not developed in the size. Embryologists determine grading by checking the grade of fragmentation along with the appearance and number of cells. The following grades are there for embryo assessment.
- Grade A:The embryos with 6-8 equally sized cells. It must have no or less than 10% fragmentation.
- Grade B: The embryos having cells of uneven or irregular shape with 25-50% fragmentation.
- Grade C: The embryos having an unequal size with 50% or more fragmentation.
- Grade D:It is the lowest grade and poor-quality embryo. It has less possibility to grow further.
Grade A and B have the highest potential to develop further.
Blastocyst Stage: This stage is reached on day 5 of the fertilization. In this stage, embryos start to enlarge to tightly confinethe zona pellucida (the membrane surrounding an ovum). Grading in this stage is more accurate. It depends on the degree of cavity expansion, the appearance of inner cell mass, and the trophectoderm that creates the placenta. The first part of this grading is a number from 1 to 6, where 6 is the most expanded cavity. The second part is letters from A to D, where A is tightly packed cells; while D has few cells. The third part is another letter that signifies the quality of the trophectoderm.
For successful IVF treatment, contact SCI IVF Hospital – the best IVF center in Delhi NCR.