Glossary

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I

Implantation: The process whereby an embryo, after travelling through the fallopian tube to the uterus, embeds itself in the lining of the uterus.


Impotence: Term used to describe the inability of a man to perform sexual intercourse or gain an erection. 


Inner cell mass: A clump of cells growing within and to one side of the blastocyst from which the embryo develops. 


Insemination: The placing of sperm in the female reproductive tract by artificial means.  Can be performed using either freshly ejaculated sperm or sperm that has been frozen.


Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI): In conjunction with IVF, where a single sperm is directly injected, by a recognised practitioner, into the egg.  A clinic may also use donor sperm or eggs.


Intra Uterine Insemination (IUI): Insemination of sperm into the uterus of a woman.


Intra vaginal culture (IVC): A method whereby sperm and aspirated oocytes are incubated together in a container held in a woman's vagina in order to effect fertilisation in vitro without the need for complex laboratory facilities.


In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF): Patient's eggs and her partner's or donor's sperm are collected and mixed together in a laboratory to achieve fertilisation outside the body.  The embryos produced may then be transferred into the female patient.


In vitro: Performed outside the body (i.e. in the laboratory).


In vivo: Performed in the body.

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Page last updated: 18 July 2012