Fertilisation failure

(18 Posts)
beanhunter Wed 11-May-16 13:38:17

Hello all. We've just heard that our first cycle of IVF has failed. Background is we have a nearly 4 year old conceived after clomid, metformin and ovarian drilling while waiting for IVF. Miscarriage in September after natural conception and then referred for IVF due to recurrent cysts.

Cycle seemed to go perfectly, yesterday I had 12 eggs retrieved, 10 were mature. Husbands sample was deemed above average quality and proceeded to IVF.

This morning we were phoned to say that none of the 10 have fertilised. To say we are devastated doesn't quite cut it. Fertilisation was never expected to be our issue as we've conceived before.

I'm seeing the consultant in an hour and wondered if you had any suggestions on what to ask?

OP’s posts: |
Elbbob Wed 11-May-16 19:37:53

Hi beanhunter I am so sorry you've had this awful news, and I'm sorry no one was around to answer your question - how did the meeting with the consultant go? What did they recommend?

beanhunter Wed 11-May-16 19:59:51

We saw our consultant and the senior embryologist. No really answers here. Went through cycle and they can't pinpoint anything they would particularly change other than we would only be allowed icsi if we went again. They will send some samples of culture medium and sperm off to make sure no infection - that's their policy with failed fertilisation.

Eggs are apparently "oval" and they feel maybe look a little tired this morning. Sperm looked good when went it - they said based on numbers they would never have contemplated icsi upfront. Sperm have got through the cumulus but no evidence of binding to zp at all.

Only thoughts are that if we go again to have icsi and consider having short protocol to minimise risk of ohss and to make it a less drawn out process psychologically. They wouldn't want to go again Until at least July period.

They said they can't rule out lab failure but they didn't change any culture medium or procedures and everyone else from last 48hrs has had good fertilisation.

So will be phones first thing tomorrow and if by any miracle there's one or two then they will go back tomorrow.

OP’s posts: |
Hyland Sat 14-May-16 15:47:02

Thinking of you ... hope to see you back on the thread. Even if it is just for emotional support for you're only sanity.

Hyland Sat 14-May-16 15:47:15


Amummyatlast Sat 14-May-16 17:51:12

We had no eggs fertilise on the first go. We then did ICSI and short protocol on the next go and had 5 fertilise, with one put back (DD), so don't lose hope.

beanhunter Sat 14-May-16 19:18:13

Hi. So I'm not quite sure what happened. They aren't sure if it was delayed fertilisation or what. We ended up with a d3 transfer of 2 v slow embryos 3 and 4 cells. They don't think it'll result in pregnancy but considering we were told it was all over on d1 it's a far better outcome than we could have hoped for.
Thanks amummlast that's a good story for me to hang on to. How many eggs did you get on each cycle?

OP’s posts: |
Amummyatlast Sat 14-May-16 22:54:51

Oh, that's not so bad then. And you never know.

We had 25 eggs on the first go, with no fertilisation. 20 eggs on the second go, so only having 5 fertilise wasn't great as ICSI is meant to have a 75% fertilisation rate, but it was better than nothing and led to DD.

Hyland Sun 15-May-16 07:44:03

So you did get a ET in the end?

When is your test day?

beanhunter Sun 15-May-16 08:26:56

Yes Hyland. A d3 but they were basically only at d2 stage so not optimistic based on what embryologist said. Still I would rather they were in me than perishing in a lab. And we were told less than 1% chance of getting to transfer from where we were so hoping we can prove the odds wrong. 2dpt today. Test day 11dp3dt.

OP’s posts: |
Hyland Sun 15-May-16 08:36:44

I totally see why you wouldn't want to get your hopes up.

A lot of pressure for anyone to try and beat the odds. Fingers crossed x

Still nice that you can continue the process so you know what happens every step of the way.

It is a difficult one, having the right level of optimism and not to punish yourself if it doesn't work.

Will they still be sending the other eggs off for investigation?

beanhunter Sun 15-May-16 08:56:58

No the eggs seemed fine. They've sent the sperm and future medium off to make sure no infection but so far that all looks clear. They think it was just bad luck and a bad day for the boys swimmers. If we decide to go again we will be having icsi.

OP’s posts: |
Elbbob Mon 16-May-16 19:05:54

Hi beanhunter what a emotional week you have had but I'm so pleased to hear you had 2 embryos transferred! Fingers crossed - now you are in the 2ww and you really must be kind to yourself, and think positive. Good luck xx

BoFair Thu 14-Mar-19 17:48:18

Hi Ladies,

This is obviously an old thread but I am in the same position as you @beanhunter were. Had EC on Monday. Of the 23 eggs retrieved, 19 were matured and received ICSI. On Wednesday (day 3) we got a call from the Embryologist saying none had fertilised and that the lab hadn't seen this sort of thing happen in years. They left the eggs in the incubator for another night, not expecting much. Today, we get a call saying that 2 eggs had fertilised! But they were only 2 cells at this stage and we'd have to continue monitoring. I can't help but hope and pray that these two embryos will come through. But I can't find anything online to support that late fertilization can result in a healthy pregnancy. 14 hours until tomorrow's call....

Fabsco Wed 17-Feb-21 16:40:29

Hi Ladies,

This is an old thread but I thought of sharing my first IVF experience here as it was one of the few threads on total fertilisation failure that I found. My husband and I have been trying to conceive for two years now. I got pregnant in October 2020 but had a miscarriage one week after getting a BFP. It was heartbreaking for us, so we decided to start IVF treatment in December 2020.

I had my egg retrieval procedure yesterday and was told that nine eggs were retrieved. Later in the day the embryologist phoned to advise that all nine eggs were going to be fertilised via IVF. It was excellent news for us as we were told that around 80% of eggs are mature enough to be fertilised.

Today we got the devastating news that no eggs were fertilised in the end. The embryologist said that the sperm 'had been swimming around the egg' but none attempted to fertilise them. The suggested ICSI at the next cycle and that was it. He gave us no hope that they would continue to monitor fertilisation or go for a rescue ICSI. He simply said that they don't perform ICSI unless there is evidence of infertility from either side.

We are confused because we were advised to choose the ICSI option at consent stage in case it was needed in our treatment. We don't understand why it wasn't used in our cycle or performed at a later stage. We got no follow up phone calls from the clinic, apart from a nurse asking me to stop taking medication as I had a failed cycle.

I would be interested to hear from @beanhunter, @BoFair, @Amummyatlast on the follow-up steps you've taken after being informed that none of the eggs were fertilised, please.

Thank you so much for sharing the info above, which gave me some reassurance that I am not the only one.

beanhunter Wed 17-Feb-21 18:42:05

Hi fabsco and I’m so sorry to hear what you’ve gone through.
We had a further 2 cycles of treatment with my eggs - good fertilisation with icsi but progressively fewer eggs. Second cycle had 2 poor day 5 blasts transferred (after 10 collected and 10 fertilised), 3rd cycle had 2 d2 put back as they were all that had fertilised out of 4. Neither resulted in pregnancy.
I also had a spontaneous pregnancy in that time but sadly a mmc at 14 weeks.
We then moved to donor eggs in 2019 after it was clear that my eggs were a bit rubbish. Again we had icsi as was standard for that clinic and had 100% fertilisation and got 4 blasts. 1 of them is now 22 months old and the other 3 are in the freezer in the Czech Republic.

I still don’t think our clinic really understood what happened and it seemed very odd that we were able to get pregnant the “normal” way after having had failed fertilisation.

OP’s posts: |
Fabsco Wed 17-Feb-21 20:03:24

@beanhunter Thank you so so much for sharing your journey with me. I'm sorry for everything you had to go though, but your strength is inspiring to me. I'm happy to hear that you have your wee baby now and three healthy embryos after a successful round of IVF with donor eggs.

I don't think our clinic knows much about what happened either. The senior embryologist at the clinic phoned us this afternoon and explained that it was too late to perform ICSI, and he would recommend that this is performed in the next cycle. He also said that the clinic doesn't test the sperm or the egg for abnormalities after total fertilisation failure as the solution for whatever issue that they may have is ICSI? Not too sure about that, but I guess we'll ask the consultant about further tests once he calls us.

Thank you so much again for sharing your experience. It's been a hard day today, but tomorrow will be better.

Fabsco Tue 23-Feb-21 18:21:01

Hello ladies, I thought of getting back here to share the content of my review appointment. As I expected, there wasn't much more to what they had already shared with us on the day after egg retrieval. They don't really know why none of the eggs were fertilised, as both the eggs and sperm had good quality and quantity. They recommend ICSI if we decide for a subsequent cycle. The stimulation protocol that I was on seemed to work and there's nothing that they would do differently apart from ICSI.

I asked the consultant about hard egg shells and she said that there was no indication of that. One thing that she said that contradicts what the embryologist told me is that the sperm tried to fertilise the egg but there was no fertilisation after 24 hours of observation. The embryologist had told me over the phone that the sperm were swimming around the petri dish and away from the egg, which could indicate some sort of immune incompatibility. She said that it wasn't the case.

I then asked her what our chances of pregnancy were if we were to commit to a second cycle with ICSI, and she advised that they are the same as before as total fertilisation failure doesn't mean that subsequent attempts will be unsuccessful. She even said that, before ICSI procedure was created, couples were advised to go for another round of IVF as the chances of repeated TFF were very low.

She advised me to take a couple months' break and go back to them if we decide to go for another cycle with ICSI. OH and I will have a think about everything and see where we are financially and emotionally before committing to further treatment. I kind of want to request information about this failed cycle and take it to another clinic to see what they say. I am just not totally convinced that it was just bad luck and there's no explanation to TFF?

Thank you so much for all the messages and advice shared in this discussion forum. You have helped and supported me so much more than friends and relatives. Good luck to you all, and may you be blessed with your baby soon!

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