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Intrauterine Insemination

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), allows the introduction of specially prepared sperm into the uterus through the cervix using a plastic catheter. By preparing the semen sample, sperm can be concentrated. The concentrated sperm is placed into the upper uterine cavity, increasing the number of viable sperm that reach the end of the fallopian tubes and the eggs. While it is not believed to enhance how the sperm fertilize, it may increase the chance of fertilization by increasing the interaction between the capable sperm and the egg. IUI alone, however, has not been shown to be effective for most cases of infertility. Therefore, IUI is most often used in combination with fertility medications that increase the number of eggs available for fertilization. IUI is commonly used for milder male fertility factors and for unexplained infertility. More severe cases of male infertility will be best served by in vitro fertilization.

IUI requires careful timing so that it is done close to ovulation and it is commonly performed 1 to 2 days after the ovulation triggering injection (hCG). No pain medication is required.