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What is Artificial Insemination?

When I say “fertility challenges” your mind likely goes straight to IVF, right? While IVF is an amazing tool to help people start families, there are actually many different options out there. Many actually find that artificial insemination is a better solution for their fertility situation.

Let’s break down the four different types of artificial insemination and answer some FAQs. Knowledge is power! And we want you to have all the information you need to start a family!


What is Artificial Insemination?

Artificial Insemination is a fertility treatment in which sperm are inserted into a woman's uterus using the IUI (Intrauterine Insemination) procedure.

An IUI is a low-complexity procedure that directly injects sperm into the uterus to increase the odds of impregnation. Couples who choose to pursue an IUI typically consist of a female partner with a healthy reproductive system and a male partner dealing with low sperm count or poor sperm volume.

A fertility doctor uses an insemination catheter, a thin, flexible tube, to inject the sperm sample, and the female partner will undergo two treatments at 12 and 36 hours after hormone medications are given. The procedure essentially bypasses any failed attempts by transferring a strong concentration of sperm at peak ovulation times, which are monitored through bloodwork and hormone medications.


Pros and Cons of IUI

IUI is a straightforward experience with moderately high success rates for first attempts. Because the eggs don’t need to be removed from the body, the whole process is far less invasive for the woman carrying the pregnancy. IUI also costs less than IVF since no egg extraction or laboratory monitoring is needed.

Though IUI can be a great option for some people, it does not address several factors that might be causing your infertility. For IUI to be effective, the woman carrying the pregnancy needs to be ovulating and have healthy and undamaged fallopian tubes, and the sperm used has to be healthy and mobile enough to reach the egg. Depending on the cause (or causes) of your infertility, IUI alone might not be enough to help you successfully get pregnant. This is why fertility testing is important to determine the root cause of your fertility challenges.


Artificial Insemination FAQs

What’s the difference between IUI and IVF?

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) involves the direct injection of sperm into the uterus, while In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is a more complex procedure where fertilization occurs outside the body, typically in a laboratory dish. IVF involves retrieving eggs from the ovaries, fertilizing them with sperm in a lab, and then transferring the resulting embryos into the uterus. IVF is usually recommended for couples with more severe fertility issues or those who have not had success with other methods like IUI.


How long does implantation take?

Implantation typically occurs around 6-10 days after ovulation. Once the fertilized egg (embryo) reaches the uterus, it attaches to the uterine lining, which marks the beginning of pregnancy. However, the exact timing can vary from person to person.


What’s the best timing for artificial insemination?

The timing of artificial insemination depends on various factors, including ovulation. Typically, the procedure is scheduled around peak ovulation times, which can be determined through ovulation monitoring and hormone medications. In general, insemination is performed within a window of 12-36 hours before ovulation to optimize the chances of fertilization.


What are the success rates of artificial insemination?

Success rates of artificial insemination vary depending on factors such as the age of the woman, the cause of infertility, and the type of insemination procedure used. Generally, success rates for IUI range from 10% to 20% per cycle, with higher success rates observed in couples with less severe fertility issues.


Is artificial insemination right for me?

Whether artificial insemination is the right choice for you depends on your individual circumstances, including the cause of infertility, your age, and your preferences. It's essential to consult with a fertility specialist who can evaluate your situation and recommend the most appropriate treatment option. Artificial insemination may be a good option for couples with issues like low sperm count, ovulation problems, or unexplained infertility.


Can you use IUI and Ovarian Stimulation Therapy together?

Yes, to maximize your chances of an optimal outcome, you can use low complexity fertility therapies — intrauterine insemination (IUI) and ovarian stimulation — together.


Achieve a Healthy Pregnancy and Start Your Family

If you're on the journey to conceive, Kofinas Fertility Group is here to help you achieve your goal. With our award-winning doctors boasting decades of experience and employing modern, effective treatments, we're committed to helping you realize a healthy pregnancy and start your family.


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