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Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a type of artificial insemination in which the semen sample is washed and prepared by the andrologist and the motile sperms are inseminated by the doctor inside the uterus at the time of ovulation. The conception occurs naturally inside the body.
IUI is very simple and economical procedure. It usually costs around 15000- 20000 INR.
IUI can be done in natural or stimulated cycle depending on case and takes about 15-18 days from the start of the menstrual period.
In natural cycle there is one follicle and in medicated more than one usually 3 follicles.
On the day of the procedure the husband is asked to give the semen sample in sterile container labeled with all the identification details.
The sample is then washed with media either with simple wash or density gradient method depending on the semen parameters.
In simple wash technique the liquefied semen sample is mixed with media and centrifuged for about 8-10 min at 1500 rpm and the supernatant is then discarded and the pellet is overlayed with 0.4-0.5 ml washing media for about 20 min and the best sperms swim up on the surface and about 0.4-0.5 ml volume is loaded in the IUI catheter and inseminated.
In Density gradient method where debris, agglutination is high in the semen sample, a density gradient is prepared and the semen is overlayed on the top of the gradient and centrifuged for about 15 min at 1500 rpm, the supernatant is discarded and the pellet is mixed with the wash media and centrifuged for 10 min and the supernatant is then discarded and the pellet is overlayed with 0.4-0.5 ml washing media for about 20 min and inseminated with an IUI catheter.
The procedure time is about 30 min post sperm preparation and you can travel back the same day. The result comes after 15 days of the procedure.
The procedure is usually painless and is like normal ultrasound but in few cases where there is vaginismus it can be done in mild sedation or General anaesthesia.
The success rate of IUI is 20% at best per attempt. It is recommended to try atleast 3-4 IUI cycles before commencing other fertility treatments.
However with increased female age, severe sperm factors and multiple failed attempts, it is best to go for IVF straight away.