Intrauterine Insemination

What is intrauterine insemination?

Many patients visit our renowned Southern California fertility center asking about artificial insemination. Another term for this procedure is intrauterine insemination (IUI). It is a fertility treatment our team performs in our office to help couples and women conceive, with or without donor sperm.

What to expect from intrauterine insemination

Intrauterine insemination only takes about 10 minutes and is painless, although some women report mild cramping. During the procedure at our Southern California fertility center, the doctor injects your partner’s or a donor’s sperm into your uterus while you lay on the exam table. Like a pelvic exam, the doctor inserts a speculum to visualize your vagina and cervix. Then, he inserts a thin plastic tube into your uterus and injects the sperm. By getting the sperm closer to the egg, you have a better chance of getting pregnant.

Our andrology team has washed and prepared the sperm, meaning they have separated it from the seminal fluid. As a result, it is in a more concentrated form that can improve IUI success.

How to prepare for IUI

You may take medication to trigger ovulation, or you may go through your normal menstrual cycle. Either way, our staff monitors your progress to tell when the time is right for intrauterine insemination. Before the procedure, your partner will provide a semen sample in a sterilized cup, or we can use sperm from the donor you selected.

The reasons we use intrauterine insemination

Our Southern California fertility center may use IUI for many reasons.

  • Unexplained infertility. This occurs when experts cannot determine the cause of infertility.
  • Semen allergy. Sometimes, a woman is allergic to her partner’s sperm or substances in the seminal fluid.
  • Cervical factor infertility. The cervix may produce a thick mucus that doesn’t allow sperm to travel and reach the egg.
  • Donor sperm. IUI is an excellent option for patients who want to use donor sperm due to fertility issues or the desire to achieve single motherhood.
  • Male infertility. Intrauterine insemination may help if a man has a low sperm count, weak sperm movement, or abnormal sperm shape or size.

Everyone situation is different, and there are many reasons why you may have trouble getting pregnant. The first step is to make an appointment at our Southern California fertility center. Contact us for the care and expertise you deserve.