Intra Uterine Insemination (IUI)

IUI is the process of placing processed semen sample containing motile sperms through the cervix into the uterine cavity around the time of ovulation.

Who Does IUI Treatment Help?

IUI is generally the first line of treatment when medication and timed intercourse does not succeed. It is recommended for patients with mild to moderate decrease in sperm count and/or motility, or if there is mild endometriosis. For women who do not ovulate regularly, ovulation induction maybe combined with IUI. Also, for some couples who don't have any apparent cause for infertility (unexplained infertility), IUI may be advised.

What Are The Requirements Before IUI Procedure?

  • Confirmation that you are ovulating, either with or without medications
  • Patent tubes
  • A normal or mild to moderately decreased sperm count

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Appointment Details

Treatment

You will generally be advised medications (oral tablets and / or gonadotropin injections) from day 2 or 3 of your menses for 5-10 days. Your response will be monitored by sonography every 3-4 days.

When the follicle/s are of appropriate size, the final process of ovulation will be triggered with an injection of hCG and the IUI procedure will be planned approximately 36 hours later.

Your partner needs to provide his semen sample on the day of an IUI. If a problem is anticipated, previously preserved sample can also be used. The semen sample is processed in the laboratory and then injected into the uterus.

You may then be given medications for support for the next 14 days at the end of which a serum beta-hCG test is done to confirm pregnancy.

What are the chances of success?

Worldwide, the success rates for IUI average at about 15%. Around 80% of the pregnancies occur within the first three IUI cycles. We generally recommend a maximum of three IUI cycles.

Precautions

Since this is a relatively simple and safe procedure, it does not require any special precautions. Only a few minutes rest after the procedure and then you can resume your routine.

Possible complications

Apart from mild pain and spotting on the day of an IUI, there are no major complications. Around five to ten percent of the patients have multiple (generally twin) pregnancies. Sometimes, a patient may respond excessively to medications and produce more eggs, putting her at risk for multiple pregnancies and a condition called Ovarian Hyper Stimulation Syndrome (OHSS). If there is a risk of this occurring, your doctor will advise you accordingly and the cycle may be cancelled or converted to an IVF cycle. Infection is a very rare complication.

Frequently Asked Questions

IVF was originally developed for women with blocked tubes or missing fallopian tubes and it is still the procedure of choice for these situations. It is also used when other conditions are present, including endometriosis, male factor infertility and unexplained infertility in which no medical cause for infertility can be found. Our experts will review your history and help to guide you to the treatment and diagnostic procedures that are most appropriate for you.

1/3rd of the infertility issues are contributed by the male partner. Male factors also influence increased rate of miscarriages. Most common causes of male infertility are as follows.

  • Abnormal sperm count or low sperm motility
  • Chronic ailments such as cancer
  • Environmental factors: Exposure to radioactive chemicals
  • Lifestyle factors: Being overweight, smoking, drinking alcohol
  • Age

Infertility is gender neutral. It affects the male and the female population. 1/3rd of the infertility issues are contributed by the female partner. In the world 50-80 million suffer from infertility. Most common causes of female infertility are as follows.

  • Age
  • Endometriosis
  • Hormonal issues leading to ovulation problems
  • Tubal blockage
  • Fibroids
  • Lifestyle factors: Being overweight, smoking, drinking alcohol, unhealthy diet
  • Unexplained infertility

Women are born with approximately 2 million eggs in their ovaries. Before a girl reaches puberty, about 11,000 eggs die every month. Thus, in her teenage years, a woman has only about 300,000 to 400,000 eggs available. From this point onwards, about 1000 eggs are utilised every month. This has nothing to do with any form of birth control, pregnancy, hormone production, health, lifestyle or nutritional supplements. Eventually, a woman reaches menopause when she has no viable eggs left.

PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) refers to a condition caused by hormonal imbalances. Women suffering from PCOS produce higher than normal amounts of male hormones. This affects ovulation and can result in irregular periods. In some cases, women suffering from PCOS may have irregular periods. This, in turn, can make it harder for these women to conceive. In fact, PCOS is one of the most common causes of female infertility.

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