Intrauterine insemination (IUI)

Intrauterine insemination (IUI) Procedure, Risks & Treatment

IUI or intrauterine insemination is an artificial insemination process and is a procedure to deal with infertility.

The sperms are washed and concentration in one region of the uterus. To that end, the hope of this procedure is to get the sperm to meld in with the egg. However, this process is an older variant and the newer versions can provide you with a better outcome. The goal of IUI is for the sperm to swim towards the fertilized egg. The result of this is hoped as a normal pregnancy.

Why this procedure is considered

This procedure is considered due to the following conditions:

  • In case you are dealing with a donor sperm, IUI us the method used to achieve pregnancy.

  • If there is an unexplained case of infertility, IUI is considered to be the first treatment to induce pregnancy.

  • Sub-fertility in males is also the reason to choose this option. Here the males are not able to produce a proper amount of sperm needed in order properly cause pregnancy. IUI is the first treatment for this as well.

  • If the cervical mucus is a bit too thick, the sperm is not going to propagate to the fertilized eggs. Therefore, the IUI method provides a more precise approach to deal with this issue.

  • There are cases where the women are allergic to semen. Although rare, they do exist and IUI is one way to induce pregnancy in this case. 

Preparing for the procedure

There are three points that entail preparing for this procedure:

  • First, your partner will have to provide a semen sample. In case there is a case of sperm freezing, then the donor sperm is going to be thawed out and prepared. 

  • You will have to monitor your ovulation through several home-based methods like the Basil Temperature. This is done because the time of great significance when it comes to IUI and monitoring ovulation is the way to increase the chances of pregnancy.

  • Now, once the Ovulation is detected, the process will begin.

During and after the procedure

During the procedure:

  • You will have to lie down on the doctor’s table.

  • A catheter is first attached to the vial of sperm and then this catheter is inserted into y our vagina.

  • The sperm sample is then pushed through the tube into your uterus.

  • The catheter is removed and then the speculum is removed as well.

After the procedure

You cannot just move about freely just after the procedure is over with. The sperm needs some time to settle in. To that end, you will be told to lie down in the same position for a brief period. The procedure is done on an outpatient basis. To that end, you can go back home after the procedure is over with.

What are the risks of this procedure?

The procedure entails the following risks:

  • There can be an issue of infection: There s a slight and little risk of infection development after the procedure is done. This is mostly because of the catheter. However, as it is sterilized at all times, you won’t need to worry about this risk for too much.

  • Spotting: The catheter can cause a small amount of vaginal bleeding, causing a bloodied spot to appear on the garments. However, the chance of this happening is quite low as well. 

  • Sometimes, there is a chance that the IUI might work a bit too good. In such cases, you might have twins, triplets or more. However, the chances of this are low as well.


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Dr. Madhu Goel

Senior Gynecologist and a Senior Consultant

Dr. Madhu Goel is a well renowned senior gynaecologist and a senior consultant at Fortis La femme, New Delhi. She runs a private consultation in Goel’s surgery and Gynea centre and prior to being associated with Fortis; she was a consultant a Rockland Hospital.