Does the Number of Eggs Guarantee the Number of Embryos?

Two of the commonly asked questions during the egg retrieval are:

  • How many eggs and embryos will be received after the retrieval?
  • Do the number of eggs guarantee the same number of embryos?

 In order to help parents clarify their questions, it is important that IVF program coordinators explain the specifications and peculiarities of the process, but before, we will try to give conceivable answers to these questions below.

First of all, the brief answer to the both questions is: we cannot tell exactly or give any guarantees, however, while we are doing everything to reach the best results, we are also happy to help you in understanding the process.


Egg retrieval

The number of retrieved eggs depends on several factors. We can never tell in advance how female body will respond to the hormonal treatment. There exist several IVF stimulation protocols (in simple words , the ways of stimulation). The most appropriate protocol is carefully chosen by the doctor, who studies the medical history and condition of the patient. The aim of the stimulation is to produce the sufficient amount of qualitative eggs.

Some females have a high response to the stimulation, some of them intermediate and some – poor. This individual response also plays a role in the number of eggs that will be retrieved.

In fact, women with the higher response to the stimulation tend to have a higher number of qualitative eggs. As a result, it is not possible to talk about the number of eggs prior to the stimulation process.



After the retrieval, eggs will be matured and fertilized in the lab under the supervision of the embryologist. However, not all of them will have the equal chances of the fertilization. It depends on the following factors:

  • Egg quality
  • Sperm quality
  • Their interaction

There is also a proven non-proportional connection between the maternal age and the quality and number of embryos: As the female age increases, quality and number of the eggs decrease.

Of course, the higher number of retrieved eggs are proportional to the higher chances of success and the higher number of embryos, however, no guarantees can be given due to other influential factors included.

After the retrieval and fertilization, embryos will be graded according to their quality. The highest quality ones will be then transferred with the expectations of successful implantation and pregnancy.