Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago ivf

Assisted Embryo Hatching Using a Laser with IVF
Video of Laser IVF Hatching Procedure

Video of assisted hatching of the embryo
Click play below to see a laser assisted hatching video

Laser assisted hatching

  • Assisted hatching is a technique where a gap is made in the shell or "zona" of the embryo prior to the embryo transfer
  • The idea is that this small slit in the shell of the embryo improves its ability to hatch out of the shell after it forms a blastocyst

IVF hatching has been done using 3 general methods

The most commonly used method for assisted hatching over the years has been with acid Tyrode's . However, in recent years use of a laser in IVF labs is becoming more common - and has become a useful tool for micromanipulation of embryos. However, it must be used expertly or damage to the cells could occur.

How is a laser used for IVF hatching?

As can be seen in the video (above), there is a circle of colored light that shows where the laser will fire. The beam itself is invisible and when it is pulsed we can see the effect, but can not see the laser beam itself.

A laser works by releasing energy in the embryo's shell - thereby vaporizing or dissolving it. Because of the heat generated it must be used cautiously so that cells are not heated significantly.

In the example of embryo hatching shown in the video, the laser is pulsed 3 times to create a complete gap in the shell. The exact technique can vary based on the spot size, power settings, technique, etc.

Assisted hatching success rates

Some studies have shown that assisted hatching can improve IVF success rates as compared to cases without it. However, there are no published, well-controlled studies showing superiority of laser IVF hatching as compared to using the acid Tyrode's method.

Why would a laser be used as the hatching method instead of other methods?

Lasers are usually used to perform trophectoderm biopsy. Therefore, when an in vitro fertilization laboratory sets up to do trophectoderm biopsy they would often get a laser and would likely start using it for their hatching procedures.

  • Assisted hatching with a laser is faster and easier to set up compared to the acid method

Assisted hatching and infertility - who should have it done?

  • There is not agreement on what the indications should be for doing assisted hatching
  • This is discussed on the assisted hatching for IVF page

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I am so grateful for Advanced Fertility Center. I just had my son Leland. I want to thank Dr. Catenacci and all of the nurses that helped us. Especially Ashley in the Crystal Lake office. You made this process easier by being supportive and positive. Thank you very much!


Dr. Sherban and his staff are the most amazing, compassionate, and supportive people. After almost 5 years of trying to conceive, going through numerous tests and meeting with another clinic closer to home, who told me my chances even with IVF were still very low, a good friend recommended advanced fertility center of Chicago. Best decision we ever made! We now have 2 amazing children who are now 5 and 3 years old! I cannot stress enough how amazing this staff is, they make you feel like family!


Our experience was amazing with Dr. Cantanucci and all of the nurses (especially Ashley). After ttc for 4 years and at 41 years of age, we became pregnant after 1 round of IVF, and had our beautiful boy this past October. Can't thank them enough!


2/7/15 our son was born all thanks to the assistance of Dr. Sherbahn and his staff. Everyone was so helpful and here for all our questions, worries, etc. They want this for you just as much as you want this for you! Handled with pure professionalism and care from the very start! Thank you advanced fertility!