Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a type of artificial insemination. It is considered as a simple fertility treatment procedure in which the sperms are directly placed inside woman’s uterus to facilitate fertilization. The goal of IUI is to increase the chance of fertilization by placing increased number of sperms to reach the fallopian tubes. It provides the sperm an advantage by placing sperm cells directly into the uterus around the time of ovulation, but it still requires a sperm to reach and fertilize the egg successfully on its own strength. It is far less expensive and invasive infertility treatment option as compared to in vitro fertilization (IVF). The success of intrauterine insemination directly depends on the sperm to swim into the fallopian tube and successfully fertilize a waiting egg which results in a normal pregnancy. IUI can be simultaneously performed with your fertility medications or with normal cycle.

How does the Procedure work?
Before intrauterine insemination, your doctor may recommend ovulation-stimulating medications in which careful monitoring will be required to determine when the eggs are mature. Although this procedure can be done with or without medication. The IUI procedure will then be done around the time of ovulation usually about 24-36 hours after the surge in LH hormone that indicates ovulation will happen soon. The sperm sample will need to be prepared first, where the semen sample is washed by the lab to separate the semen from the seminal fluid. You will be asked to identify the sperm sample to ensure that it is healthy and correct one. After the initial preparation, the doctor will use insert the sperm directly into the uterus to visualize the cervix. You may be asked by your doctor to rest for a short period of time after the process. This IUI increases the number of sperm cells that are directly placed in the uterus which significantly increasing the possibility of conception. The whole IUI process involves only a few minutes and may results minimal discomfort. You need to only wait for signs and symptoms of pregnancy and nothing else.

Risks Associated With IUI
Intrauterine insemination is a relatively safe and simple process and the risks associated with having an IUI procedure are very is low. The risks include:

Infection: There is also a low risk of developing an infection as a result of the IUI procedure.

Multiple pregnancies: However, IUI itself isn't involved with higher risk of a multiple pregnancy. But the chance of a multiple pregnancy increases significantly when coordinated with ovulation-inducing medications. A multiple pregnancy invites additional risks including early labor and low birth weight than a single pregnancy does.

Spotting: Sometimes there is a chance of small amount of vaginal bleeding as a result of placing the catheter in the uterus, but this doesn't usually have a negative impact on the chance of pregnancy.

Fertility drugs side effects: The prescribed fertility drugs to enhance the success rate of the procedure develop stimulate hyper ovulation wherein the ovaries release multiple eggs. Some side effects may arise due to these drugs. Fertility Preservation

Author's Bio: 

SCI Healthcare, Founder & Director Dr Shivani Sachdev Gour has experienced more than 10years in fertility services. Dr. Shivani Gour completed her graduation and speciality training in Gynaecology and Obstetrics from Mumbai.