Intra Uterine Insemination IUI may be used in some cases of male factor infertility, like low sperm counts or if a sperm donor is being used. It may also be used if the woman’s cervical mucus is less than ideal. Also, in cases of unexplained infertility, IUI may be tried if Clomid (clomiphene citrate) alone doesn’t help.
What is Intra Uterine Insemination IUI?
IUI, or Intra Uterine Insemination, is a relatively simple infertility treatment. A small tube is used to place specially washed sperm directly into the uterus. You may know of Intra Uterine Insemination by the more commonly used term artificial insemination (AI). IUI and AI are one and the same fertility treatment. When considering fertility treatment above and beyond fertility drug use, IUI may be first tried. It is easier to do than assisted reproductive technologies (ART), like In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), and costs much less.
How does Intra Uterine Insemination IUI work?
As mentioned above, Intra Uterine Insemination is pretty simple. While fertility drugs are not always used during IUI, most doctors choose to use an ovulation drug like Clomid to increase the chances of success.
You will have to come for follicular monitoring to monitor your follicular growth by using a transvaginal ultrasound. Once the follicle has reached a size of above 17mm and the endometrial thickness is more than 7mm, injection hCG will be given for follicular maturation and rupture. The patient will be called after 36 hours to confirm ovulation.
Assuming you are not using a sperm donor, your partner will be given instructions for sperm collection .The Sperm will be washed by different techniques and the best are concentrated. This concentrated semen sample will be injected to your uterus through the cervix transvaginal by using an IUI cannula. Intra Uterine Insemination IUI treatment is typically painless, which may be a little cramping. It is performed in the doctor’s office, and the procedure can be done by a nurse or a doctor.
In case of donor sperms, healthy and intelligent voluntary donors are screened for any sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and any known history of genetic disorder in the family. Once all screening test are negative, they are recruited for donation and the samples are cryopreserved (kept frozen in liquid nitrogen). Before releasing it for use another batch of tests are done to make double sure that the samples are negative for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). This is generally done when a man’s testes cannot produce sperms or they are not able to afford Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) treatment.
How successful is Intra Uterine Insemination IUI? In a review of studies on Intra Uterine Insemination IUI and unexplained infertility, just 4% of women got pregnant per cycle without fertility drugs, and 8% to 17% got pregnant when fertility drugs and Intra Uterine Insemination IUI were combined.
Donor sperm insemination has a higher success rate as much as 20-25% as the female factor are relatively normal.
Though In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) success rates per cycle are much higher, Intra Uterine Insemination is significantly less expensive, and a much easier procedure.