Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago ivf

In Vitro Fertilization Picture of a Morula Stage Embryo - Day 4 Human IVF Embryo

Morula stage IVF embryos

Morula stage human IVF embryo picture - day 4 of development
High quality day 4 embryo from in vitro fertilization
This is a compacting morula
There are many cells and the cell borders are becoming fuzzy as the embryo "compacts"
With compaction it looks as though the cells are "melting together"

  • A morula contains about 10 - 30 cells
  • The morula stage is the final stage prior to formation of a fluid filled cavity called the blastocoel cavity
  • Once the cavitation has occurred, we can see the fluid in the cavity between the cells and we call the embryo an early blastocyst
  • Although morula stage embryos are usually seen on day 4 and blastocysts are usually seen on day 5, sometimes we have only morulas on day 5
  • In that case, we do not know if the embryos are slower than average because they are weaker, or because they are healthy but just developing slower than average
  • Transferring morulas on day 5 results in a reasonable pregnancy rate, although it is not as high as the pregnancy rate with blastocyst transfer on day 5

Embryo arrest at the morula stage is not uncommon, which is one reason that transfer at the blastocyst stage can be a beneficial IVF treatment strategy.

Tour of our IVF lab

Embryo images page

4920 N. Central Ave
Suite 2C

Chicago, IL 60630

Phone: (773) 794-1818
Fax: (773) 794-1819

30 Tower Court
Suite F
Gurnee, IL 60031

Phone: (847) 662-1818
Fax: (847) 662-3001

820 E. Terra Cotta Ave (Rte 176)
Suite 118
Crystal Lake, IL 60014

Phone: (815) 356-1818
Fax: (815) 356-1866



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!