Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)
What is Intra-uterine insemination and how does it
Artificial insemination or intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a
treatment for infertility, when a couple cannot
conceive a baby. It involves directly inserting sperm into a
In IUI, a man provides a sample of sperm, which is then 'washed'
and filtered in the laboratory using special techniques. The
technique separates fast moving sperm from more sluggish or
non-moving sperm. This ensures that only the highest quality sperm
is used for the procedure.
During the procedure, the concentrated and fast moving sperm are
then placed into the woman's womb close to the time of ovulation
when the egg is released from the ovary in the middle of the
Could IUI benefit us?
IUI may help you as a couple if:
- The woman has mild endometriosis.
- There are ovulation problems.
- You are unable to have sex because of disability, injury, or if
your partner experiences premature ejaculation.
- You or your partner's fertility problems are unexplained.
- If you are a single woman and are trying for a baby using
donated sperm. (Please note that treatment is not currently
available on the NHS for this group)
It is essential that your fallopian tubes are known to be open
and healthy before the IUI process begins. A tubal patency test is
usually carried out as part of your assessment by the fertility
clinic. This can be done by hysterosalpingogram (HSG), which
is a form of X-ray, Hycosy, which is a form of scan or using
laparoscopy which is a form of keyhole surgery. These may locate
any problems or blockages in your uterus or fallopian tubes.
IUI isn't recommended if both your tubes have adhesions or
scarring that might stop an egg travelling from the ovary to your
uterus. But if you have at least one working tube and ovary on the
same side, IUI may be an option for you.