Assisted Insemination

IUI is a simpler and less-invasive treatment option, where we help a sample of carefully selected sperm to reach the uterus. IUI is often a first step in your assisted conception journey.


Is IUI right for me?

IUI might be the first step in your fertility treatment journey if you:

  • Have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility
  • Have been diagnosed with mild male factor infertility
  • Have scarring of the cervix or other concerns that may reduce sperm penetration into the uterine cavity
  • Have irregular or absent ovulation and have not fallen pregnant with ovulation induction alone
  • Cannot have regular or penetrative sex
  • Need to use your partner's frozen sperm
  • Need to use donor sperm

How does IUI work?

The aim of IUI treatment is to increase the number of sperm that reach the fallopian tubes. The more sperm that reach the tubes - the greater the chance of fertilisation. Essentially, the technique provides sperm with a head start by placing it nearer the egg.

Different IUI treatment types

At SSfertility IVF, we offer three different types of IUI treatment. Your fertility specialist will choose the best option for your unique circumstances. There’s no one size fits all.

This option allows patients to complete IUI without taking any medication. The treatment cycle will follow your own natural menstrual cycle with tracking of your naturally developing follicle. This avenue is commonly used for women with proven natural ovulation or couples who are unable to have sex.

This treatment option involves using a medication to help stimulate your ovaries to ovulate - you simply take an oral tablet for several days in the early part of your cycle. Your cycle is tracked for follicle development and a trigger injection is often used to ensure timing of ovulation is known. This option is commonly used to help women who can’t pinpoint when they ovulate due to having infrequent or irregular periods.

In this IUI treatment cycle, we use follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) injections to help stimulate your ovaries. FSH stimulates the ovary directly to produce an egg-containing follicle . This follicle is tracked with ultrasound and blood test before being timed to release with a trigger injection.


Important components of IUI treatment

The two most important aspects of IUI treatment? Washing the sperm to find the most active and virile sperm, and timing the insemination procedure to coincide with when you’re ovulating.

Our specialised team of scientists carefully prepare each sperm sample using a procedure commonly known as ‘sperm washing’. There are different types of sperm washing procedures depending on the quality of the sperm sample the laboratory receives.

One technique is that the sperm sample is placed at the bottom of a test tube and a culture media is overlayed on top and then this is incubated at body temperature (37degrees) for 30mins-1hour. The result? The most active sperm swim up into the culture media layer. The final sample consists of the most active and vigorous sperm concentrated in a small volume of fluid taken from the top of the test tube and then this is used for insemination.

Your fertility specialist will time your IUI treatment procedure to coincide with the window when you’re ovulating. However, it isn’t critical to time the insemination for the exact time of ovulation. That’s because both the sperm and the egg remain viable in the female genital tract for many hours. As a result, your specialist will time the insemination procedure within several hours of when you ovulate.


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Wherever you are on your journey, one of our supportive nurse enquiry team can help you understand your options and take the next step. These conversations are free and informative.

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