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Insemination: Intrauterine insemination (IUI)

Intrauterine insemination

What is Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)?

If it is proving impossible to get pregnant in the conventional way, the doctor can perform so-called insemination (semen transfer). Sperm is introduced into the uterus of the woman with the help of a simple medical procedure. These may be the sperm of one's partner (homologous) or of a sperm donor (heterologous/donor). To do this, the processed sperm are transferred directly into the woman's uterus using a catheter following ovulation, which is triggered by hormonal stimulation. Insemination is often used in the case of mild fertility disorders in the man, for example.

When is an Insemination used?

At the moment of natural ovulation, specially prepared sperm from the male partner are transferred directly into the uterus cavity with the help of a thin catheter for insemination (also known as an IUI).

Insemination is recommended:

  • When the man shows a degree of infertility

  • When the couple cannot have sexual intercourse

  • For same-sex couples, e.g. lesbian couples

  • If distinctive features of the cervix show that there will be interference with the ascension of sperm to the uterine cavity (e.g. a narrow cervix or anomalies in the area of the uterine neck)

What is the Insemination process?

1. Determine the right moment

It is important that the injection of the sperm into the uterus takes place shortly before ovulation or immediately on the day of ovulation. Your doctor at the fertility clinic will determine when you ovulate by means of ultrasound examinations and hormone monitoring. Since the egg can only be fertilised for 12-24 hours after ovulation, optimal timing plays an important role.

2. Semen delivery & preparation in the lab

On the day of insemination, the partner's sperm is delivered to our institute. In special cases, it is possible to take sperm with you or to cryopreserve sperm at our clinic beforehand. The sperm is then specially processed in the IVF laboratory.

3. Insemination

The prepared semen is flushed into the uterine cavity by our IVF specialists using a thin catheter. The IUI treatment takes only a few minutes and is pain-free.

What is the success rate of insemination?

The advantage of insemination is that a very large number of sperm cells can be brought close to the egg. Whether a pregnancy will occur after insemination depends on several factors - such as the age of the woman, the quality of the egg, the sperm quality of the partner and any accompanying hormone treatment.

Women under 35 have a probability of becoming pregnant of about 12-18% per insemination; women between 35 and 40 have about a 10% chance of pregnancy due to already reduced fertility.

Are there any risks or side effects with insemination (IUI)?

The risks of insemination without hormonal stimulation are very low. Due to the use of ultra-soft and very flexible catheters, injury to the uterus through insemination can practically always be ruled out.

What are the costs of insemination?

The costs of insemination depend on whether hormonal stimulation is carried out beforehand or not. Please refer to the TFP prices page for an idea of the current costs.

Your first consultation with TFP Fertility

If you still have some questions about the procedure of intrauterine insemination (IUI) or your individual chances of pregnancy. Just give us a call and arrange an initial consultation with one of our fertility experts in your local TFP fertility clinic in Vienna, Wels or Klagenfurt.

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