IUI right for you

How successful is IUI?

If you are curious about the success rates of Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) and are wondering if it will help you in conception, we have got all the latest information for you here:

Below is the estimation of your chances of conception based on the number of IUI cycles you undergo:

  • With just one IUI cycle, women often have a 10 to 20 percent chance of conceiving.
  • The more number of IUI cycles you undergo, the higher will be your chance for a pregnancy. Pregnancy rates can be as high as 80 percent with 3 to 6 cycles of IUI.
  • The rate of successful pregnancies with IUI is just slightly lower than or is similar to pregnancy rates of couples that become pregnant on their own.

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) success rates differ depending on a various factors including:

  • The woman’s age
  • Fallopian tube status, where at least one tube is not blocked
  • The sperm sample- Men with very low sperm counts, that is total motile sperm count lower than 5 million generally do not succeed with IUI.

Note: Using frozen donor sperm in IUI can help. It increases your pregnancy success when compared to intravaginal insemination.

IUI success rates by age

Just as age affects fertility, it affects IUI success rates too. Like most fertility procedures, the success rate of IUI is higher in younger women.

Listed below are the chances of a successful pregnancy by age after ONE IUI cycle:

  • Under 35 years- 10-20 percent chances of pregnancy
  • Between 35-40 years: 10 percent chances of pregnancy
  • Women 40 years and above: 2-5 percent chances of pregnancy

The best part about IUI is that most people that try it have a good chance of becoming pregnant over time. However, they must be willing to try multiple times. One may take around 3 to 6 IUI cycles before they conceive successfully. 

If you have already tried 3 to 6 cycles of IUI and still have not gotten pregnant, it is time for you to discuss other options with your fertility specialist. If you are over the age of 35, you might want to talk to ask your doctor to check if in vitro fertilization (IVF) is a better option for you. It is recommended that women over 40 move straight to IVF.

Fertility drugs linked to IUI success

Fertility drugs further help in getting pregnant along with IUI. Your fertility specialist may prescribe Letrozole (Femara), clomiphene citrate (Clomid), or injectable medications like human menopausal gonadotropin (hMG) or follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) before you start you IUI cycle. These medications help in conceiving by stimulating ovulation. In case if you have already given your shot at IUI with injectable medication or clomid along with 3 to 6 cycles, and you are still not able to get pregnant, you need to discuss other options with your healthcare provider.

The IUI process

The right timing and a healthy sperm helps in boosting the chances of a successful IUI cycle. Your fertility specialist will help you in determining the right time for the IUI procedure. In general, an IUI cycle is started just before you ovulate. Your fertility specialist may ask you to use a home ovulation predictor kit (OPK). He/she may also ask you to come to the office for an ultrasound monitoring which will help in determining the best time for your IUI cycle.

The IUI procedure is very similar to a Pap smear test. It is performed in a treatment room and after the IUI is over, you will be asked to rest for 10-15 minutes. In most cases, fter this you are allowed to leave

Sperm washing & IUI success

One of the reasons why IUI is so successful is the specialized process of sperm wash. In this process, the sperms are washed and prepared before insemination.

Here is how the sperm wash process works:

  • The stronger and healthier sperm is separated from the weaker sperm.
  • There is a high concentration of strong, healthy sperm in the insemination sample.
  • All forms of toxin are removed from the sperm and semen as these toxins lead to allergic reactions in some women which can cause hindrance in pregnancy.

Is IUI right for you?

Intrauterine insemination is considered an affordable form of fertility treatment. Therefore, many couples or individuals will opt for trying IUI before going ahead with the more expensive and intensive IVF process. Many individuals and couples opt to try IUI first. This is because they weigh the many benefits of IUI, including the lower time commitment, lower cost, and lesser stress, and a lot more.

Since every individual is not the same, your fertility specialist will be able to provide a more accurate estimate of your expected IUI success rate. It is best you ask your doctor for further information about the number of IUI cycles that are right for you.