How is The IUI Procedure Done?
IUI is a process recommended by doctors for a couple who have been facing difficulty with regard to pregnancy. It is a fertility treatment that involves the placement of the sperm cells directly into the uterus of a woman.
Natural conception involves the sperm moving from the vagina into the cervix, the uterus and finally up to the fallopian tubes. The IUI procedure involves the placement of washed and concentrated sperm cells into the uterus in order to place them closer to the eggs to increase the chances of fertilization.
How the IUI procedure Works
The procedure is performed in three stages as mentioned below:
- Fertility drugs are administered to stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple mature eggs
- A sperm sample is obtained from the partner or a sperm donor
- The sperm is prepared and injected into the uterus on an exam table
The process does not cause discomfort in most women and is performed in the absence of an anaesthetic as it is painless.
Preparing for IUI procedure
Before the process is initiated, a fertility specialist will perform a pre-IUI workup to check the health condition and assess the fertility of the patient. The hormone levels are monitored as well to ensure they are in the acceptable range. The uterus is examined to ensure it can support a pregnancy.
Ovulation drugs may also be administered along with serial ultrasounds to ensure that the eggs produced are healthy and to determine the apt time for the procedure to happen.
The IUI procedure
After the sperm sample is obtained, it is washed in order to prepare it for the procedure. The sperm wash involves removing the extra fluid, eliminating the dead sperms, weak sperms, bacteria, debris, and prostaglandins that can cause uterine cramps, at the same time concentrating the most motile sperms in order to ensure that a larger number of motile sperm cells reach the uterus.
Insertion of sperm into the uterus is a quick and painless process which will take a few minutes only. A thin catheter is inserted into the cervix through which the sperm is injected precisely into the uterus.
After the IUI procedure
A urine pregnancy test is performed two weeks post the procedure to confirm if a pregnancy has taken place.