Laser Assisted Hatching (LAH)

The laser-assisted hatching (LAH) process opens the embryo's zona (shell) using the micromanipulation method. The opening makes it easier for it to hatch inside the uterus and enhances the chances of implantation and pregnancy. With this method, pregnancy rates can increase by up to 70%.

What is Laser Assisted Hatching (LAH)?

The process of embryo hatching is known as LAH or laser-assisted hatching. A specialist uses a specific laser and micromanipulation method to pierce a tiny hole in the embryo's shell (zona pellucida). 

This process also immobilises sperm using a laser. The sperm is immobilised by nicking its tail before being injected into the egg's cytoplasm. Instead of using a micropipette, the sperm tail is targeted with a laser beam, immobilising it in a few moments without harming the other sperms. The laser's sperm tail immobilisation eliminates the requirement for PVP suspension of the sperm.

Why is Laser Assisted Hatching recommended? 

The doctor won't advise women to have LAH if they undergo IVF. According to experts, LAH may help some couples conceive successfully. A fertility specialist can assess if LAH can help a couple after reviewing all their medical records and infertility history. In general, assisted hatching may increase the conception rate in the situations listed below:

• A woman has experienced two or more failed IVF attempts.

• A woman has increased FSH levels.

• A woman has a poor-quality embryo.

• A woman aged 38 or older.

• A woman has unexplained infertility.

Eggs from older women typically have a thick outer shell. Women with high levels of follicle-stimulating hormone experience the same issue (FSH). In such circumstances, the egg won't hatch and connect to the womb. All of these reproductive problems may benefit from laser-assisted hatching.

The stiff zona pellucida of frozen or thawed embryos also makes it difficult for them to hatch and implant. In such cases, the outer shell cracks due to laser-assisted hatching, allowing the embryo to implant more easily.

Request an appointment easily at Apollo Fertility, Amritsar, for a consultation by calling 1860 500 4424.

How is Laser Assisted Hatching conducted? 

On the third day following an IVF cycle, while the embryo is still in the lab, specialists perform the LAH technique.

A specialised laser to create an opening in the outer shell is used. It is a low-risk and efficient laser technology method, which enables a more controlled procedure. Although creating a tiny crack in the outer shell seems straightforward, it requires careful steps and a qualified expert. Specialised equipment available in the embryology lab is needed to carry this cutting-edge technology. It simply takes a few seconds to complete the process.

Laser shots are employed in this method to soften the zona pellucida, creating an opening. The doctor uses the laser with the utmost care and precision without touching the embryo. This process ensures the embryo's security.

What are the advantages of Laser Assisted Hatching?

As the embryo is not handled manually during the LAH technique, there are fewer chances of injury. The process' specified laser accuracy ensures the safety of the embryo. Hatching with laser assistance increases pregnancy success rates. Compared to other aided hatching techniques, laser-assisted hatching is more precise.

What are the possible complications of Laser Assisted Hatching?

Similar to other IVF or ICSI procedures, risks exist. Like:

  • Laser-assisted hatching introduces some hazards because it alters the embryos' normal hatching process. One of the potential concerns is that an embryo could sustain a fatal injury. The injury may take place either before or after the embryo transfer. In any event, there won't be a pregnancy. 
  • Another danger is that the embryo might not fully hatch even after LAH.
  • LAH may lead to multiple pregnancies. Multiple pregnancies are typically linked to IVF, and the LAH technique enhances this likelihood even further. Less than 1% of the time, this results in high-risk pregnancies.

Request an appointment easily at Apollo Fertility, Amritsar, for a consultation by calling 1860 500 4424.

1. Is LAH better than other procedures?

Laser-assisted hatching needs fewer embryo interventions than other procedures, is speedier, and as a result, the embryo's time outside the incubator reduces.

2. Does LAH improve the chances of conception?

Hatching helps the embryo in shedding its protective membrane, which facilitates implantation. It can boost pregnancy rates, but it's not always essential. However, a doctor may advise LAH if multiple IVF cycles are unsuccessful.

3. What are the results of LAH?

Assisted hatching IVF methods may have greater pregnancy rates than IVF without helped hatching.

4. Who can get more benefits from the LAH technique?

• An older woman with a high FSH hormonal level on day 3 of IVF. • Collected embryos are of poor quality. • The embryos have a thick outer shell. • A woman who has several failed IVF.

5. Can I take baths after the LAH procedure?

It's crucial to stay away from baths, swimming pools, and saunas during the first two weeks following the LAH procedure. One can, however, take showers.

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