Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a method of artificial insemination used to treat infertility.
IUI uses a catheter to insert washed sperm directly into the woman’s uterus, with the aim of increasing the number of sperm that reach the fallopian tubes, increasing the chance of pregnancy. The semen can be fresh or it can be frozen and thawed, but it must be healthy and mobile.
Process for IUI Treatment
The woman may be prescribed fertility drugs to stimulate the ovaries and increase egg production, however it is not a requirement and many women rely on their natural menstrual cycle.
At the time of ovulation, sperm must be collected from the male donor using natural of assisted sperm retrieval methods. The semen is then washed in the laboratory and concentrated in a small volume. Sperm is placed directly into the uterus with a catheter.
Good Candidates for IUI
Couples with unexplained infertility, woman who suffer from tubal damage, poor quality eggs and/or low quantity eggs, menopause or male factor infertility.
Success Rates using IUI
The success rates of IUI are similar to those of intercourse (nearly 15 – 20 percent per cycle.) Sperm count, ovarian reserve and other factors may affect a couple’s individual chances of success. The quality and health of the sperm and eggs are an important factor in determining the success rate of IUI.
As with all other IVF treatments, age is also a major factor. Success rates decrease as age increases. A couple or recipient in her 20’s or early 30’s will have a higher chance of success than one in her 40’s.
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