Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)

IUI or Intrauterine Insemination is a fairly simple fertility treatment where the sperm is directly placed inside a woman’s uterus. IUI is more commonly known by its popular name AI or Artificial Insemination.

During natural conception, sperms travel up to reach the fallopian tubes. In most cases, the sperms are destroyed and chances of conception are reduced. In an IUI procedure the sperms are directly placed in the uterus through a thin catheter. This puts them closer to the egg and thereby increases the chances of pregnancy in many couples. The IUI treatment success rate is said to be about 20% more than any other invasive fertility procedure. It is estimated that without the administration of drugs, a woman with the worst infertility condition can have 4% IUI success stories.

An IUI procedure can be done with or without the usage of drugs. It is less invasive than an IV treatment.  The myth that IUI procedure is painful is incorrect. This procedure only takes a few minutes and causes mild discomfort during insertion. Some women feel a cramping sensation when the catheter passes through the cervix. Other women may be subjected to mild vaginal bleeding. But, the said discomfort goes away after the procedure is completed.

IUI is also less expensive than an In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) treatment. According to a survey done by The National Infertility Association, a simple IVF treatment cost 9 times more in a cycle, than an IUI treatment. It is estimated that in one cycle, an IUI treatment can cost up to 3000 US Dollar, whereas an IVF treatment costs a whopping amount of 19000 US Dollar.

Main Causes of Using IUI Treatment

IUI procedure is most common when a female uses a sperm donor. For couples, the common reason for using an IUI procedure can be listed below:

  • Low sperm count in the male partner.
  • Trouble with sperm mobility.
  • Erection issues.
  • Other unexplained causes of infertility.
  • Presence of a cervical scar tissue may hinder sperm mobility inside a uterus.
  • Presence of cervical mucus problems.
  • Pain during sexual intercourse.

IUI is not recommended if:

  • A woman suffers with diseases in the fallopian tube.
  • A woman has pelvic infections.
  • Both fallopian tubes in a woman are removed or blocked.
  • A woman suffers from mild to severe endometriosis.
  • A man produces no sperm.



Possible Treatment

The IUI procedure is performed during the time of ovulation. You can expect several visits to your doctor before this procedure. Blood tests and Ultrasounds are performed and medications are given before the actual day.  Before this procedure starts, sperm is collected from your partner or donor.

  • The sperm goes through an intensive sperm washing, where the seminal fluids and other unwanted elements are separated from the sperm.
  • The sperm collected is then passed through the cervix with a catheter.
  • The sperm is then placed inside the uterus. A few minutes of rest and you are good to go!

Symptoms after Implantation

You can expect pregnancy after two weeks of taking the procedure. Certain symptoms are indicative:

  • Vaginal discharge.
  • Mild menstruation spotting.
  • Cramping sensation.
  • Recommended intercourse after 48 hours of the procedure.



Q1: Which is a better treatment, IVF or IUI?

A: Choosing a fertility treatment solely depend on the medical conditions of a couple or a patient. While IUI may be the most popular choice, care must be taken to know if this treatment is suitable for you. A visit to the doctor is strongly recommended before making a decision.


Q2: Which has a better success rate IVF or IUI?

A: It is estimated that in one cycle, IUI has a success rate of 8-18% for women under the age of 35 and IVF has a success rate of about 40-45%. For women above the age of 40, the average IUI treatment success rate is 2-5%, whereas in IVF treatment it is 15% or less.


Q3: What are the chances of having a twin with IUI?

A: If you are subjected to an IUI treatment with the use of Ganadotropins, chances are likely. Ganadrotropins increase the chances by 30% for having twins and 5% for having triplets.


Q4: When do you take progesterone in IUI treatment?

A: Progesterone supplements can be taken typically after 6-11 days after the IUI procedure.


Q5: Can I take part in sports activities after IUI?

A: Activities like swimming or any strenuous sports are not recommended after an IUI treatment. A woman should be as relaxed as possible.



1: How IUI differs from IVF

Both intrauterine insemination and in vitro fertilization are fertilization treatment for those who are struggling to get a baby. The main difference between these two is: in IVF, the eggs are stimulated, retrieved, fertilized and transferred to the uterus, and in IUI, the sperms after processing are directly injected into the uterus. Read More


2: Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) – Why Use It?

Intra-Uterine Insemination (IUI) is a fertility treatment in which sperms are directly placed inside the uterus of a woman. The procedure aims at increasing the number of sperms that reach the fallopian tube and subsequently increase the chances of fertilization with egg. Read More