How do infertility treatments work and how effective are they?

Thanks to medical science and technology, science is able to do what nature fails to do. If you are struggling with infertility or have not been able to plan parenthood, then you stand good chances of becoming a parent with various infertility treatments.

With the advancement of medical science, almost all kinds of fertility issues can be addressed. But, which infertility treatment will work for you will depend on the root causes of your infertility.

Sometimes the infertility treatment is for just one partner, whereas at other times, it may involve treatment of both the partners. Whatever is the line of treatment, in all procedures, the principle followed is to bring the wife’s egg and husband sperms together.

Today we will be talking about one common infertility treatment, which is often recommended by doctors, and is popularly known as Intra-Uterine Fertility or IUI. Let us see what IUI is in detail to address all your curiosities and concerns.

What is Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)?

Intrauterine Insemination or IUI is a simple infertility treatment process in which the sperm cells are taken from your partner and are inserted into your uterus.

In other words, it is an artificial insemination which refers to artificially introducing the sperm into the female uterus to assist pregnancy.

The process is quite simple and easy to follow. IUI is the initial or first-line treatment for patients with mild or unexplained infertility.

How is the female partner evaluated for IUI infertility treatment?

The female partner is tested for hormones and reproductive health by checking the following parameters:

a) Endometrial Thickness: During menstruation, the woman is checked for the thickness of the inner lining (Endometrium) of the Uterus. This is where the egg gets implanted post fertilisation.
b) Blood Test: It is done to check the right level of hormones in the woman’s body.
c) Ovulation cycle: The ovulation cycle of the woman is studied to see if the ovulation is healthy or not.

How is the male partner evaluated for IUI infertility treatment?

The male partner is checked for the following parameters:

(a) Sperm Count: The higher the sperm count, the higher the chances of conception are and vice-versa.
(b) Sperm Motility: The sperm should be motile to be able to reach the woman’s egg.
(c) Morphology of the Sperm: The sperm should be in good shape without any defects.

If the sperm count is less or the quality of sperms is not good, then you also have the option of using donor sperm sample.

Is Intrauterine Insemination Painful?

The good news is that IUI is a painless procedure. However, you may feel mild pain, discomfort or cramps when the sperms are injected inside your Uterus. The trouble, if any, is mild and tolerable. You are discharged within one hour after the procedure.

Another good thing about this infertility treatment process cost is that it is highly affordable.

The process of IUI infertility treatment in India

The IUI process is simple and straightforward. The following steps are followed in this procedure:

• Your doctor understands your medical history from you and tries to evaluate your and your partner’s reproductive health.
• You are asked to report during menstruation when you are sent for Ultrasound and blood tests.
• As per the doctor’s understanding of your case, the doctor advises medication involving fertility drugs, to start during menstruation. The fertility drugs are given to increase the number of eggs reaching maturity to increase the chances of conception.
• You are called back to repeat the same tests after a week.
• After 15 days of your menstruation, you are examined to check your ovulation, meaning your ovaries are releasing eggs in proper number, size, time, etc.
• Semen samples are collected from your partner and refrigerated.
• Sperms are washed with a chemical to remove seminal fluid and debris. This helps the sperm to swim faster to reach the egg.
• You are made to lie down.
• The sperms are inserted into your Uterus using a long sterile tube.
• You are made to stay in a reclined position for at least 30 minutes. With this, the IUI infertility treatment procedure is over.

When do you get to know the result?

Well, you are called two weeks after the procedure when your pregnancy test is done, till then you are required to keep your fingers crossed.

IUI infertility treatment success rate?

Various factors govern the success rate of IUI treatment. Factors like your age, your spouse’s age, causes of infertility, medical history, other medical conditions, etc. affect the success rate of IUI infertility treatment procedure.

Usually, it has been noted at Indira IVF centres across India, that IUI procedures come with a10% to 20% success rate. If somehow, you are not able to find success with IUI, then you may be advised to go for IVF (In Vitro Fertilisation). IVF procedure is known to have a better success rate when it comes to infertility treatment.

Risks involved in IUI Infertility Treatment

The chances of any medical complications arising during or after the procedure is very less. The birth defects are also very less as reported till date. The chances of catching an infection are also minimal as the process is short-lived and non-invasive.

However, there are increased chances of getting pregnant with twins, triplets or more because the woman is kept on fertility drugs which increases the number of eggs available to be fertilized.

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