Blastocyst culture is a method of growing embryos in the laboratory for an additional 2-3 days after fertilization, beyond the traditional 2-3 days of standard in-vitro fertilization (IVF) culture.
The blastocyst stage is the time when the embryo is ready to implant into the uterus, which is the key step in establishing a pregnancy. Culturing the embryos to the blastocyst stage can also allow for better selection of embryos that are more likely to lead to a successful pregnancy.
The procedure for blastocyst culture typically involves the following steps:
Blastocyst culture is typically recommended for couples who have been trying to conceive for at least one year without success, and have undergone previous unsuccessful IVF cycles or have good quality embryos. This is because, culturing the embryos to the blastocyst stage allows for better selection of embryos that are more likely to lead to a successful pregnancy. It’s also recommended for those who want to reduce the number of embryos transferred and have a single embryo transfer. This can lower the risk of multiple pregnancies, which can be associated with higher risk of complications.