Comparison of two ready-to-use systems designed for sperm-hyaluronic acid binding selection before intracytoplasmic sperm injection: PICSI vs. Sperm Slow: a prospective, randomized trial

Fertil Steril. 2012 Sep;98(3):632-7. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2012.05.043. Epub 2012 Jun 29.


Objective: To compare, in a strict, randomized way, the efficiency of two ready-to-use systems for hyaluronic acid (HA)-intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI): an HA culture dish (PICSI Sperm Selection Device) and a viscous medium containing HA (Sperm Slow).

Design: Prospective, randomized study.

Setting: Medical center.

Patient(s): Fifty subjects per treatment group (100 total).

Intervention(s): One hundred ICSI treatments were randomly carried out with PICSI or with Sperm Slow for sperm selection. Randomization was conducted with sealed envelopes. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection was performed by a single embryologist with 5 years' experience in HA-ICSI.

Primary outcome measure: good-quality embryo rate.

Secondary outcome measures: oocyte fertilization, pregnancy and implantation rate, and the duration of the ICSI procedure.

Result(s): The good-quality embryo rate was comparable between the two groups (58.5% with PICSI vs. 56% with Sperm Slow). Overall there were no statistically significant differences in secondary outcome measures except ICSI procedure duration, which was 3 minutes longer in the PICSI group.

Conclusion(s): Both PICSI and Sperm Slow allow comparable clinical efficiency in selecting HA-bound spermatozoa.

Clinical trial registration number: ISRCTN72668039.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hyaluronic Acid / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sperm Injections, Intracytoplasmic / methods*


  • Hyaluronic Acid