Intrauterine insemination (IUI)
Intrauterine insemination (IUI) isn’t believed to be a complex procedure comparatively with other methods of fertility treatments. During the IUI treatment, embryologists get ready the semen sample of a partner (or donor’s sperm), that is placed directly into the patient’s uterus through cervix with the help of a special catheter. IUI is the in vivo type of fertilization, which means the egg is always fertilized inside the body of the human, unlike in-vitro, when fertilization is made in the laboratory. It is also considered one of the least invasive treatment types.
Who should consider IUI treatment?
Since any woman who will decide to proceed with IUI should be totally healthy and prepared, she must do the obligatory testing before starting this program. Firstly, she should not have any serious issue with conception. Secondly, IUI is only possible if woman has no problems with her fallopian tubes. Thirdly, she should ovulate regularly.
Normally, intrauterine insemination is done when there are problems connected with the motility. IUI simplifies the fertilization and helps spermatozoa reach the oocyte inside the woman’s body.
Insemination is a frequent recommendation in such cases:
- Male infertility
- Issues with ovulation (IUI treatment along with the medication triggers the ovulation)
- It is also a good decision for single women who may choose having donor’s material
What are the stages?
The first step is always taken at the beginning of woman’s cycle. It’s crucial in this treatment type to track ovulation because the insemination is always done right before it. Your doctor helps you with this, you just visit the clinic three-four times and do ultrasounds. When doctor tells you are ready for the insemination, the sperm sample is taken and prepared (washed). This won’t increase the quality, but will separate the sperm from the seminal type of fluid. During the insemination this sperm is placed in the uterine cavity through very thin catheter. This will take no longer than a few minutes and when the procedure is over, woman needs to have a rest for around half an hour.
There are two types of the IUI – natural and stimulated. IUI can be done during the natural cycle, when you do not use any medication because you ovulate regularly, and it can be easily tracked. If there is no ovulation in each cycle or there are problems with ovulation, medication may be required.
Intrauterine insemination is quite a safe kind of procedure, there is only 1% risk of having infection. Taking into account the reproductive clinics always have the proper disinfection and insemination is done in the sterile environment, this risk getting infected almost disappears.
IUI and possible success rates
There is a large number of factors that affects the chances for a good outcome of intrauterine insemination. Some of them include the quality of sperm, its morphology and motility. Any man has to do at least the semen analysis prior to providing the material for the insemination purposes because the medical staff has to be sure there are at least 3 million of motile spermatozoa. Sometimes, inseminations with the stimulation drugs give better results than ones in the natural cycle. It is totally understandable that any woman would prefer the minimum of medication involved, but sometimes it may put you closer to the motherhood.