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Preparing Yourself For An IUI Procedure

One’s knowledge of IUI can help increase the chances of success of the procedure. Research is part of the preparation. In this article, we aim to provide basic information on intrauterine insemination.

Initially, you may want to look around for a facility that provides IUI services. You will then have access to information regarding doctors, costs, risk factors, and health matters. It is also beneficial to look for a support group that deals with psychological readiness for the couple to deal with any outcome the procedure may deliver.

Some questions you might have regarding IUI:

The differences between IUI and IVF

Intrauterine Insemination, otherwise known as IUI, is a treatment that involves sperm “washing” and then placing the processed specimen into the female’s uterine cavity with a catheter.

IUI success depends on the couple’s physiological situation since successful insemination depends on sperm and egg getting together in the woman’s body to complete the fertilization process.

In vitro fertilization, or IVF, is a procedure that assists couples in producing an embryo. A two-to-five-day-old embryo is implanted into the uterus of the woman. The procedure is successful if it leads to a normal pregnancy.

There are various methods for this procedure, but the common factor is that insemination occurs outside of the body or “in vitro” (“in glass”). IVF is a medical treatment to help the woman to produce multiple eggs. Ovulation is triggered hormonally, and the mature eggs are then removed and inseminated externally with the sperm of the man.

How is IUI done?

In the IUI process, the male provides a semen specimen. This specimen can consist of either fresh or frozen sperm. During the procedure, the sperm is washed, concentrated, and warmed in the lab to enhance its fertilization potential.

The sperm sample is then drawn into a sterile catheter, which is used to introduce the sperm into the uterus through the cervix. The sperm is subsequently injected into the uterine cavity through the catheter, akin to a Pap smear procedure for the woman.

Successful IUI hinges on precise timing, ensuring that the sperm reaches the fallopian tube when the egg is present, thereby improving the chances of fertilization.

How can you prepare yourself for higher chances of success?
If you have decided to try IUI, you definitely want the procedure to have the very best chance of success. Here are some important points to consider.

Some causes of infertility for which IUI can be an effective treatment include:

  • Infertility due to ovulation problems
  • Unexplained infertility
  • Mild male factor infertility
  • Mild endometriosis that causes infertility

IUI is NOT effective with:

  • Blockage of both fallopian tubes
  • Severe male factor infertility
  • Severe endometriosis
  • Severe pelvic scarring

Sperm Quality

  • Having the quality of the male’s sperm tested prior to any procedure will save a lot of guesswork as to what factor is responsible should the procedure fail.
  • The best sperm sample is obtained after a two-day abstention from ejaculation before providing the sample. Abstaining increases sperm count, thereby increasing pregnancy rates.
  • IUI can be effective for some cases that have a problem with sperm quality.
  • However, if the total motile count is less than five million at the time of insemination (after processing), the pregnancy chances with IUI are much lower.

The Female’s Condition

  • It is necessary to monitor the woman’s menstrual cycle with ovulation kits, ultrasounds, or blood tests to more scientifically predict the best time to inject the sperm into the woman.
  • Medication to stimulate ovulation (controlled ovarian hyperstimulation or COH) may be used during the weeks before the procedure.
  • The medication will cause multiple eggs to be released.
  • The increase of the eggs-to-sperm ratio raises the probability of a pregnancy.
  • The age of the female contributes to the chances of success. This is due to the impact of female age on fertility. Therefore, the older the female, the lower the rate of success.
  • Severe pelvic distortion from scarring or damaged fallopian tubes lowers the probability of success because sperm and eggs will probably not be able to unite properly due to these “mechanical” problems.

Right Timing

  • After ovulation, the egg has a fertilization window of 12 to 24 hours.
  • Sperm prepared for IUI treatment does not last as long as sperm that is introduced during intercourse, so the timing of the procedure aims at having the egg in the fallopian tube as soon as the egg is inserted.

What general principles can be followed?

Healthy Practice:

  • In preparing your body for the procedure, follow a good diet; engaging in a reasonable amount of exercise will boost your chances.
  • You need to eat healthy foods, quit smoking, and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Immediately stop the use of illegal drugs.
  • Inform your IUI doctor if you are on any prescription medication.
  • Relax; don’t think too much of the outcome of the IUI. Try yoga or meditation.

Medication:

  • Studies show that IUI plus ovarian stimulation delivers a higher success rate than insemination in natural menstrual cycles (no stimulation).
  • The increased production of eggs and sperm through medication maximizes good timing and volume of eggs and sperm.
  • Various drugs can address different health conditions that may be preventing the success of IUI. It is always best to consult your doctor.


A gentle reminder: before you consider undergoing IUI, first gauge your physical situation and rule out as many factors as you can that may contribute to the failure of the procedure. If you have any questions regarding Intrauterine Insemination, don’t hesitate to
contact us.

Preparing Yourself For An IUI Procedure

One’s knowledge of IUI can help increase the chances of success of the procedure. Research is part of the preparation. In this article, we aim to provide basic information on intrauterine insemination.

Initially, you may want to look around for a facility that provides IUI services. You will then have access to information regarding doctors, costs, risk factors, and health matters. It is also beneficial to look for a support group that deals with psychological readiness for the couple to deal with any outcome the procedure may deliver.

Some questions you might have regarding IUI:

The differences between IUI and IVF

Intrauterine Insemination, otherwise known as IUI, is a treatment that involves sperm “washing” and then placing the processed specimen into the female’s uterine cavity with a catheter.

IUI success depends on the couple’s physiological situation since successful insemination depends on sperm and egg getting together in the woman’s body to complete the fertilization process.

In vitro fertilization, or IVF, is a procedure that assists couples in producing an embryo. A two-to-five-day-old embryo is implanted into the uterus of the woman. The procedure is successful if it leads to a normal pregnancy.

There are various methods for this procedure, but the common factor is that insemination occurs outside of the body or “in vitro” (“in glass”). IVF is a medical treatment to help the woman to produce multiple eggs. Ovulation is triggered hormonally, and the mature eggs are then removed and inseminated externally with the sperm of the man.

How is IUI done?

In the IUI process, the male provides a semen specimen. This specimen can consist of either fresh or frozen sperm. During the procedure, the sperm is washed, concentrated, and warmed in the lab to enhance its fertilization potential.

The sperm sample is then drawn into a sterile catheter, which is used to introduce the sperm into the uterus through the cervix. The sperm is subsequently injected into the uterine cavity through the catheter, akin to a Pap smear procedure for the woman.

Successful IUI hinges on precise timing, ensuring that the sperm reaches the fallopian tube when the egg is present, thereby improving the chances of fertilization.

How can you prepare yourself for higher chances of success?
If you have decided to try IUI, you definitely want the procedure to have the very best chance of success. Here are some important points to consider.

Some causes of infertility for which IUI can be an effective treatment include:

  • Infertility due to ovulation problems
  • Unexplained infertility
  • Mild male factor infertility
  • Mild endometriosis that causes infertility

IUI is NOT effective with:

  • Blockage of both fallopian tubes
  • Severe male factor infertility
  • Severe endometriosis
  • Severe pelvic scarring

Sperm Quality

  • Having the quality of the male’s sperm tested prior to any procedure will save a lot of guesswork as to what factor is responsible should the procedure fail.
  • The best sperm sample is obtained after a two-day abstention from ejaculation before providing the sample. Abstaining increases sperm count, thereby increasing pregnancy rates.
  • IUI can be effective for some cases that have a problem with sperm quality.
  • However, if the total motile count is less than five million at the time of insemination (after processing), the pregnancy chances with IUI are much lower.

The Female’s Condition

  • It is necessary to monitor the woman’s menstrual cycle with ovulation kits, ultrasounds, or blood tests to more scientifically predict the best time to inject the sperm into the woman.
  • Medication to stimulate ovulation (controlled ovarian hyperstimulation or COH) may be used during the weeks before the procedure.
  • The medication will cause multiple eggs to be released.
  • The increase of the eggs-to-sperm ratio raises the probability of a pregnancy.
  • The age of the female contributes to the chances of success. This is due to the impact of female age on fertility. Therefore, the older the female, the lower the rate of success.
  • Severe pelvic distortion from scarring or damaged fallopian tubes lowers the probability of success because sperm and eggs will probably not be able to unite properly due to these “mechanical” problems.

Right Timing

  • After ovulation, the egg has a fertilization window of 12 to 24 hours.
  • Sperm prepared for IUI treatment does not last as long as sperm that is introduced during intercourse, so the timing of the procedure aims at having the egg in the fallopian tube as soon as the egg is inserted.

What general principles can be followed?

Healthy Practice:

  • In preparing your body for the procedure, follow a good diet; engaging in a reasonable amount of exercise will boost your chances.
  • You need to eat healthy foods, quit smoking, and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Immediately stop the use of illegal drugs.
  • Inform your IUI doctor if you are on any prescription medication.
  • Relax; don’t think too much of the outcome of the IUI. Try yoga or meditation.

Medication:

  • Studies show that IUI plus ovarian stimulation delivers a higher success rate than insemination in natural menstrual cycles (no stimulation).
  • The increased production of eggs and sperm through medication maximizes good timing and volume of eggs and sperm.
  • Various drugs can address different health conditions that may be preventing the success of IUI. It is always best to consult your doctor.


A gentle reminder: before you consider undergoing IUI, first gauge your physical situation and rule out as many factors as you can that may contribute to the failure of the procedure. If you have any questions regarding Intrauterine Insemination, don’t hesitate to
contact us.

About Dr. Gia Pastorfide

Dr. Gia C. Pastofide obtained her pre-medical degree in BS Psychology from the University of the Philippines – Diliman, where she graduated magna cum laude.

She had her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at UP-PGH, her fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility with a focus on In Vitro Fertilization and Minimally Invasive Surgery at the National University Hospital in Singapore, her fellowship in Reproductive Medicine at The University of Tokyo Hospital, and her Masters in Reproductive Medicine and Clinical Embryology at The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Presently, Dr. Gia is the Medical Director of Victory ART Laboratory, a clinical associate professor at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at UP-PGH, and an active consultant at Makati Medical Center and Cardinal Santos Medical Center.

About Dr. Gia Pastorfide

Dr. Gia C. Pastofide obtained her pre-medical degree in BS Psychology from the University of the Philippines – Diliman, where she graduated magna cum laude.

She had her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at UP-PGH, her fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility with a focus on In Vitro Fertilization and Minimally Invasive Surgery at the National University Hospital in Singapore, her fellowship in Reproductive Medicine at The University of Tokyo Hospital, and her Masters in Reproductive Medicine and Clinical Embryology at The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Presently, Dr. Gia is the Medical Director of Victory ART Laboratory, a clinical associate professor at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at UP-PGH, and an active consultant at Makati Medical Center and Cardinal Santos Medical Center.