FAQ About Intrauterine Insemination

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) is one of the many fertility treatment options that The Fertility Institute offers. In IUI, sperm are placed inside the uterus to facilitate fertilization. Prior to insertion, the sperm are “washed”, ensuring that the most viable and motile sperm are inserted. IUI can be performed during the female partner’s natural cycle or in combination with fertility drugs. It is a cost-effective alternative to more expensive fertility treatments.

Here are FAQ about IUI:

When is IUI recommended?

IUI is recommended as a fertility treatment when there is unexplained infertility, a hostile cervical condition (including cervical mucus problems) or when there is cervical scar tissue that hinders the sperms ability to enter the uterus or ejaculation dysfunction.

How Do I know IUI is Right for Me?

At The Fertility Institute, we carefully screen candidates to ensure that IUI is the best option for you. During our consultation, we will discuss the possible causes for your infertility, the contributing factors, such as your age and health as well as the viability of different treatment options. If IUI is right for you, we will explain the benefits and risks as well as your chances for a successful conception.

How do I know if I am a good candidate for IUI?

Woman with healthy hormone levels and fallopian tubes who have a sufficient quality of eggs in their ovaries are good candidates. Chances for a successful fertilization are increased if your male partner or sperm donor can provide a sufficient sperm count with viable and motile sperm.

When is IUI not recommended?

IUI is not recommended for women who have severe disease of the fallopian tubes, tubal disease, a history of pelvic infections, a low ovarian reserve, or moderate to severe endometriosis. While severe male factor infertility does not necessarily preclude couples from undergoing IUI, it does significantly reduce their odds of success, making IVF the preferable option.

What is a pre-IUI workup?

A pre-IUI workup is when we make sure you are in good health, your hormone levels are normal and that your uterus can support a pregnancy. Prior to the IUI procedure, we will monitor your eggs through ultrasound and/or blood testing in order to determine the best time for injection.

What is the IUI Procedure?

IUI typically occurs around the time of ovulation, 24-36 hours after the surge in your LH hormone. Performed at The Fertility Institute, the procedure takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes. You will lie on the examination table just as you do for a pelvic exam. After a sperm sample is collected, the lab “washes” the sperm, ensuring that viable and motile sperm cells are placed in the uterus. Your doctor will then use a very small, thin and flexible catheter to insert the washed sperm into your cervix.

What does an IUI feel like?

Most women consider IUI to be fairly painless. Since the cervix is already slightly open for ovulation, the catheter causes very little discomfort. There may be some cramping afterward, but that is usually related to ovulation not the IUI.

What is a Male Fertility Evaluation?

In a full male fertility evaluation, sperm is analyzed for its count and motility. If your partner or donor has a low sperm count, he may be asked to provide several semen samples to use during the IUI procedure.

How many IUIs should I try before moving on to IVF?

If IUI does not result in a successful pregnancy after 3-4 attempts, our doctors may recommend IVF. If a couples’ infertility is attributed to severe male factor infertility, IVF is the recommended alternative.

When will I know the results from IUI?

You can determine pregnancy after 2 weeks by using an at-home pregnancy test or within 7-12 days through a more accurate blood test.

What is the success rate for IUI?

IUI’s success rate ranges from 6 to 26% per cycle depending on such factors as a woman’s age, the reasons for infertility, if fertility drugs were used during the procedure, whether the IUI procedure was properly timed and the viability and motility of the male’s sperm count.

How long before an IUI should the male abstain from intercourse/ejaculating?

Before giving a sperm sample, your partner should abstain from ejaculation for 2-3 days to maximize his sperm count and help ensure that his sperm are healthy and motile.

What are the risks involved in IUI?

The main risks are: some discomfort such as cramping or a minor injury to the cervix that may lead to light spotting a day or two.

What happens after IUI?

One week after ovulation, you will return to The Fertility Institute to have your progesterone level and the thickness of your uterine lining checked to determine whether the IUI procedure was effective.

Schedule a Consultation

To learn more about IUI or to determine whether you are a good candidate for IUI treatment, please contact The Fertility Institute today. We will be happy to review all of your options for advanced fertility treatments and find the best one for you.