Intrauterine insemination, also known as IUI, is procedure where a fertility specialist (often a nurse) deposits specially washed and prepared sperm directly into the female patient’s uterus via a small flexible catheter. IUI allows the sperm to bypass the cervix, making more sperm available to fertilize the egg(s).
IUI is a first line treatment for some cases of mild male infertility. The degree of male infertility is determined using the semen analysis fertility test. More serious cases of male infertility may require IVF with ICSI or even use of donor sperm.
IUI is usually used with a stimulated cycle, meaning that fertility medications are used to stimulate follicular development. IUI cycles should only be managed by an infertility specialist thoroughly trained in the use of fertility drugs.
Sperm Preparation for IUI
IUI requires the male to bring a semen sample to the Andrology Lab for processing. The sperm sample can either be collected at home or on-site in our collection room. On average, the insemination procedure only takes a few minutes. Some patients experience minimal cramping during this procedure.
IUI also may be called artificial insemination or AI.