What is Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)?

Intrauterine insemination

IUI or Intrauterine insemination is a process in which the healthy sperm sample is put into the uterus directly around the time of ovulation.
It is carried out as an alternative to natural fertility or as an infertility treatment. It is an artificial way of bringing together sperm and egg to fertilize. It is also known as artificial insemination or donor or alternative insemination.

When is IUI done?

Intrauterine insemination is used most often in couples who have:

  • For women who need to use donor sperm to get pregnant
  • Unexplained infertility
  • Endometriosis-related infertility
  • Mild male factor infertility- below-average sperm concentration, weak movement (motility) of sperm, or abnormalities in sperm size and shape.
  • Ejaculation dysfunction
  • Too thick cervical mucus interfering with the sperm’s journey.
  • Semen allergy. Rarely, a woman could have an allergy to proteins in her partner’s semen.

How does IUI work?

The IUI procedure is performed around the time you are ovulating for which your doctor will monitor your cycle closely. For IUI, your doctor will do sperm washing which is a laboratory technique for separating sperm cells from other cells and fluid, and the separating motile sperm from non-motile sperm, to use in IUI or IVF.

The technique helps to maximize healthy sperms. Then the sample is loaded and injected in the uterus of the female body. Various ovulation-stimulating medications may be used for the best results.

1-2 days post-surge of the Luteinizing Hormone (LH) is the right time to carry out the procedure as it indicates the beginning of ovulation. Pregnancy happens if sperm fertilizes an egg and the fertilized egg implants in the lining of the uterus.

Is IUI Painful?

An IUI is not painful at all. The discomfort experienced may be due to the ovulation process and feels more like cramps or slight pain in the lower abdomen.

What about Post Procedure?

  • About a week post the procedure, the doctor will prescribe lab tests to check hormone levels (progesterone, estrogen, hCG)
  • After a couple of weeks post IUI, to check pregnancy, the doctor may advise performing a urine pregnancy test or a blood test.

What are the risks of IUI?

  • There may be spotting or a small amount of vaginal bleeding caused by placing catheter inside the uterus.
  • There is a small chance of infection post IUI.
  • In case the gonadotrophin levels are high, there are chances of conceiving multiples (twins, triplets)

What is the success of IUI?

The chances of getting pregnant are 10%-20% with a single IUI cycle but can increase to as high as 80% with 3 to 6 cycles of IUI. However, the success rate of IUI depends on several factors like the age of the woman, the semen sample of man and medical condition.
Visit CMC for consultation and right options if you are facing problem to conceive. We have the best gynecologist in Mohali to guide you with your timely treatment.


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