Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)

What Is Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)?

IUI is generally suitable for couples who have unexplained infertility, the male partner has mild semen defect or donor sperm is required. It is a fertility treatment where washed sperm is placed in the uterus at the time of ovulation to assist conception.
Sperm may be provided by the woman’s partner or donor sperm.

How Does IUI Work?

  1. Step 1 - Stimulation: A low dose of Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) is administered daily from day 5 (approximately) of the menstrual cycle. Regular monitoring takes place by blood tests (measuring hormone levels in the blood) and ultrasound scan(s) to track your response to the FSH and identify when you are close to ovulation.
  2. Step 2 - Insemination: On the morning of insemination, the male partner is required to produce a semen sample which is then washed in the laboratory. Alternatively, donor sperm may be used. The insemination is a relatively simple procedure where a speculum is inserted into the vagina and washed sperm injected into the top of the uterus via a small catheter.
  3. Step 3 - Luteal Phase: Luteal support is given (2 injections of pregnyl) to ensure adequate progesterone levels and maintain the uterine lining. Approximately 18 days after insemination, a blood test for pregnancy is performed.

Possible Risks

  1. Poor response to FSH.
  2. Over response to FSH - some women are sensitive to FSH and develop too many mature follicles (>2) . This increases the chance of a multiple pregnancy and the cycle may be cancelled.
  3. IUI can be uncomfortable, and some women may experience mild cramping and spotting after the procedure.

When is IUI Used?

Common reasons include:

  1. Unexplained infertility.
  2. Mild semen defect.
  3. Ejaculation problems.
  4. Mild endometriosis.
  5. Physical problems with sexual intercourse.

Find Out More

At Flinders Fertility we recognise that a website may not cover all your information requirements. That’s why we offer a number of information options. So, if you want to find out more about IUI, either:

  1. Call on 131 IVF (131 483) to talk to one of our Fertility Specialists.
  2. Email us at
  3. Seek a referral to Flinders Fertility from your Doctor.

If you require the aid of an interpreter please let us know, as well as any specific regional dialect that you may require.

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