What is Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) and how does it work?

Intrauterine Insemination

Intrauterine insemination (IUI), a type of artificial insemination, is a relatively straightforward process that allows for conception by guiding sperm to the appropriate location at the appropriate time. A narrow tube known as a catheter is inserted into the cervix, and a precisely prepared sperm sample is injected directly into the uterus through the catheter.

“By injecting an ideal sperm sample straight into the uterus at a time when the woman is most fertile, IUI improves a woman’s chances of becoming pregnant. Studies have indicated that controlling the timing of sperm exposure and placing sperm in bigger quantities closer to the egg or eggs increases the chances of conception.”-Says Dr. Hrishikesh Pai who is working with one of the best IVF centres in Mumbai.

In this article Dr. Hrishikesh Pai will be explaining everything that you should know about IUI in Mumbai.

Getting ready for an IUI treatment

Before proceeding with artificial insemination or IUI, a physician may propose some or all of the following tests in order to establish the appropriate treatment plan:

A hysterosalpingogram is a procedure that involves injecting a tiny amount of fluid into the uterus and tubes and taking an X-ray to outline the uterine cavity and fallopian tubes.

Blood tests for FSH and estradiol to measure ovarian function, egg production, and quality

The volume, quality, and motility (normal forward movement) of male sperm are determined by a semen analysis.

Thyroid and Prolactin hormones, proof of immunity to Chicken Pox and German measles, blood type, vitamin D levels, and screening for genetic illnesses like Cystic Fibrosis are all routine blood tests.

It is recommended that the male partner refrain from ejaculating for 1 to 3 days prior to the IUI treatment (however, abstaining for more than 5 days can result in decreased motility).

Fertility medication and IUI

Fertility medication

IUI can be done during a woman’s regular cycle or with the help of fertility medication that stimulates her ovaries. IUI in combination with drugs that boost egg production has been shown in studies to dramatically boost a woman’s odds of conception. Clomid (clomiphene citrate), Femara (letrozole), Follistim, Menopur, Bravelle, or Gonal-f are examples of these drugs.

For patients suffering from age-related subfertility, endometriosis, unexplained infertility, or male factor infertility, fertility medicine is frequently prescribed.

What to Expect From IUI Treatment

The male partner gathers sperm through masturbation, either at home or in our clinic, prior to the artificial insemination operation. Our laboratory separates the sperm from the seminal fluid, which can irritate the uterine lining. The most active, motile (normal, forward-moving) and healthy sperm are retrieved and inserted into the uterus through a catheter. It takes no more than 5 minutes to complete the procedure. Mild cramping may occur after the procedure in rare circumstances, although it is usually minor and short-lived. Our patients are able to resume routine activities right away. To boost the odds of conception, their doctor may suggest that the patient have intercourse on the day or evening of artificial insemination.

The method is comparable for our single or lesbian patients who use donor sperm. The sperm from the sperm bank, which will be here on the day of the IUI, is frozen, and a sperm count and motility test is done. From there, insemination with frozen-thawed donor sperm is identical to insemination with fresh sperm. If you want to undergo a fertility treatment with donor sperm but you want to do it on your own terms in a more intimate way, you can also opt for a home insemination.

Is there any risk associated with IUI?

With IUI, the risk of pelvic infection is less than one percent. If you’re using fertility medicine, you should be aware of certain side effects, such as ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, which causes swollen and painful ovaries.

What is the maximum number of artificial insemination cycles that can be recommended?

In any given month, normal fertility results in pregnancy just 25% of the time. According to studies, the chances of conceiving with IUI are best in the first three to four months. If a patient does not become pregnant after 3-4 attempts at artificial insemination, we will usually recommend more aggressive treatment, such as switching from oral to injectable fertility medicines or doing IVF.

The number of IUI cycles a patient undergoes will be determined by them and their doctor, and will be dependent on criteria such as their age, their specific disease, and their assessment of other treatments that may be available.

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