My IVF Pregnancy Journey

What is Embryo Glue?

IVF - Embryo Glue

Have you heard of embryo glue before? The first time I heard it was when I was about to do my first IVF cycle back in Jan 2017. My doctor said that it will increase the chance of embryos implantation.

What is Embryo Glue?

EmbryoGlue® is a special medium developed exclusively for embryo transfer that contains an important substance called Hyaluronan and recombinant human albumin.

This Hyaluronan substance occurs naturally in your uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. Studies have shown that this subtance makes secretions from these organs stickier, increase the chance of fertilization and implantation. Embryo glue is developed specifically to mimic this “sticky” condition in the female uterus to aid embryos implantation.

Recombinant albumin is another important ingredient that is not derived from any human or animal products like most other albumin sources. This substance helps eliminate any risk of cross contamination.

EmbryoGlue® is produced by a company called VitroLife. EmbryoGlue® is the only available product enriched with hyaluronan.

How is Embryo Glue being used?

In the embryo transfer process, your embryos are dipped into this “embryo glue” first, then transferred into your uterus using a catheter.

EmbryoGlue Diagram (source: Vitrolife.com)
EmbryoGlue Diagram (source: Vitrolife.com)

Embryo Transfer is just one of the 9 basic steps. Click here to see all of the IVF 9 basic steps.

Embryo transfer process with EmbryoGlue

The process of embryo transfer with the use of the cultivation medium EmbryoGlue (source: Vitrolife.com)
The process of embryo transfer with the use of the cultivation medium EmbryoGlue (source: Vitrolife.com)

Success Rate

The following data is taken from Vitrolife:

More children born with embryo glue - Graph 1
More children born with embryo glue – Graph 1
And more children born with embryo glue - Graph 2
And more children born with embryo glue – Graph 2
Embryo glue increases implantation rates in patients with previously failed implantation - Graph 3
Embryo glue increases implantation rates in patients with previously failed implantation – Graph 3

From the above data, if you have an option to have the embryo glue, would you pay the extra cost?
I did and it was a success! So, I have no regret in paying the additional cost.

2 comments

  1. Hello,
    First I want to say thank you for your website, I am looking to go to the CHA fertility center in March for IVF. It is really nice to be able to read about your experience. We will have to get another test done on the embryos because we are both carriers for cf(cystic fibrosis) so I have emailed the center to see what that will do to our timeline. I was wondering where did you stay while you were there getting treatments? I am looking at different short term lease apartments. Also how sick did the shots make you feel? Were you sick afterwards? or were you able to do stuff with your day? I have been told different things from different people. Once again thank you so much for your blog!!

    1. Hi Hannah,

      In regards to your questions,
      >I was wondering where did you stay while you were there getting treatments?
      We initially booked a studio apartment through airbnb.com in Gangnam area near the Gangnam station (about 5 minutes away from CHA Fertility Center). We did not know how long we were going to stay yet at that time so we just booked it for 1 month.
      After finding out I was pregnant, the doctor recommended us to not take a long flight until I was 12 weeks pregnant due to my history of miscarriages / condition. So, we asked our friend who lives in Seoul to book a longer term lease near Gangnam station as well (since we like the location – very convenient). This might be a bit difficult if you do not know anybody who lives in Seoul since the South Korean leasing agreement is a little cumbersome (you need to pay deposit up front, pay electricity bill, cable, etc). Our friend helped us a lot with this. We ended up saving quite a bit (compared to airbnb).

      > Also how sick did the shots make you feel? Were you sick afterwards? or were you able to do stuff with your day?
      Actually, I was okay and not sick at all. I did all the shots myself. The only thing was that the shot left red marks around the injection spot for few hours. But after few hours, they disappear. They were not itchy, just a bit reddish.
      And yes, I was able to walk around, sightseeing, and shop around 😛 I just need to make sure I bring the injections with me if I need to do it during the day.
      I do read other people’s stories where they get rashes and bruises and other symptoms. Luckily, that did not happen to me.

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