Intrauterine insemination is the most common form of Artificial insemination (AI) where sperm is placed into the female uterus through an assisted medical process. IUI is cost effective and low-tech process which is used as a treatment option for the couples who have difficulty in conceiving.
Counselling: Infertility is a couple problem. We counsel both couple for an open discussion throughout evaluation, diagnosis and treatment phases which eventually helps get better desired outcomes.
Benefits of IUI
In certain conditions after normal intercourse, relatively smaller amounts of good quality sperms make it into the woman’s uterus and fallopian tubes where fertilization takes place. IUI procedure allows us to place artificially larger number of healthy motile sperms directly into the woman’s uterus which increases the chances of conception and expected pregnancy.
IUI can also used in following conditions to overcome difficulty in getting pregnant:
- Mild Endometriosis – traces of uterine tissue grows in ovaries or fallopian tubes
- Anti sperm Antibodies in the vaginal mucus may arise as a result of vaginal infection
- Irregular or absent ovulation
- Low sperm quality
- Ejaculatory problems in men
- Unexplained infertility
- Physical problems with sexual intercourse
How is IUI performed?
IUI is performed in a women’s natural cycle. Sometimes in conjunction with hormonal medication (Ovulation induction medicines).
Semen Collection process:
- (i) AIH – Artificial insemination by Husband;
- (ii) DI – Artificial insemination by Donor
Sperm Preperation: The sperm preparation means 'sperm wash' – the process of selecting most motile and healthy sperms happens at the laboratory. And the concentrated solution containing active sperms is inserted into the uterus of women for better outcomes.
Insertion: On the day of ovulation, the sperms are inserted without much of a discomfort. Sperms are injected into the uterus of women, usually it is not painful but occasionally mild cramping or discomfort may occur. You may have to lie down for about 20 minutes before resuming normal routine. Any other medications if required would be advised by the physician.
IUI is not recommended in the following conditions :
- A blocked or damaged fallopian tubes
- Woman with ovarian failure (menopause)
- Severe male infertility - where sperm quality is compromised like low sperm count, low sperm count, low sperm motility and some sperm morphological defects.
- Severe Endometriosis
- Women’s age if exceeding 40 years
Depends on the women’s age factor and the number of IUI attempts made.
Risks involved in IUI
- Multiple pregnancy
- Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome ( OHSS ) - Negligible