Fertility Treatments » IUI
Assisted Conception: IUI
What is IUI?
IUI stands for Intrauterine Insemination, a form of assisted conception treatment involving the injection of prepared sperm into the womb at the time of ovulation. You’ll need to take fertility drugs to stimulate egg production and ovulation, and to prepare the womb to receive embryos.
The sperm that’s used can be from your partner or from a donor. The use of donor sperm is indicated:
- When there is an absence of sperm in the partner
- In the treatment of single women or female same-sex couples
- When there’s hereditary disease in the male partner
Normally, we don’t recommend more than four to six cycles of IUI – after this stage, we believe that alternative treatments are usually more appropriate.
Who needs IUI?
We often propose IUI treatment for cases involving:
- Unexplained infertility
- Mild endometriosis (this is a common condition in which small pieces of the womb lining – the endometrium – are found outside the womb e.g. in the fallopian tubes, ovaries, bladder)
- Mild male factor problems
- An inability to ejaculate during intercourse
- Single women
- Female same gender couples
- A lack of success with other fertility treatments (e.g. ovulation induction)
- Those wanting to try a less complex treatment before embarking on full IVF treatment
We don’t recommend IUI for women over 35, in cases of severe male factor infertility, if you have moderate or severe endometriosis, or blocked fallopian tubes.
What happens at the Clinic?
You’ll attend an initial consultation with one of our fertility specialists and agree your personalised treatment plan. Usually, IUI treatment takes place in a hormone-stimulated cycle, where you inject yourself with gonadotrophins – hormones that gently stimulate your ovaries.
Our fertility specialists will offer you advice about these injections, based upon the information gleaned from your regular scans at our Clinic. Depending on the number and size of your follicles, and the thickness of your endometrium, another injection is given to induce ovulation. Then, the IUI is performed at the optimum time to create a pregnancy.
You’ll be able to take a pregnancy test two weeks after the IUI procedure. If this is positive, you’ll have a pregnancy scan at the Clinic about 35 days after the assisted conception insemination.
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