Need to talk? Call 1800 882 436.
It's a free call with a maternal child health nurse. *call charges may apply from your mobile

Is it an emergency? Dial 000
If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately.

beginning of content

Conception - from fertilisation to embryo

1-minute read

Download this guide as a PDF

View text version of infographic

Conception is when an egg is fertilised by a sperm. This usually happens 1 or 2 days after ovulation.

Over 4 to 5 days, the fertilised egg travels along the fallopian tube to the uterus for the egg to implant itself, and for pregnancy to begin.

  • Ovulation
  • Fertilisation
  • Zygote
  • 2-cell stage
  • 4-cell stage
  • 8-cell stage
  • Blastocyst
  • Blastocyst (hatching)
  • Implantation in uterus

Fetal development

  • Week 3 — brain and central nervous system
  • Week 3-4 — heart
  • Week 4 — upper limbs (arms)
  • Week 4-5 — eyes
  • Week 4-5 — lower limbs (legs)
  • Week 7 — teeth
  • Week 7 — palate
  • Week 7-8 — external genitalia
  • Week 4-5 — ears

Want more like this?

See more guides and infographics from Pregnancy, Birth and Baby.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: February 2024

Back To Top

Call us and speak to a Maternal Child Health Nurse for personal advice and guidance.

Need further advice or guidance from our maternal child health nurses?

Healthdirect Australia acknowledges the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. We pay our respects to the Traditional Owners and to Elders both past and present.

This information is for your general information and use only and is not intended to be used as medical advice and should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition, nor should it be used for therapeutic purposes.

The information is not a substitute for independent professional advice and should not be used as an alternative to professional health care. If you have a particular medical problem, please consult a healthcare professional.

Except as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, this publication or any part of it may not be reproduced, altered, adapted, stored and/or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of Healthdirect Australia.