Fertility Help the Old-Fashioned Way
These days, technology has enabled some quite advanced ways of helping a guy and a gal make a baby. In vitro fertilization was one of the first really advanced scientific changes to the field. Much more recently, a woman has the option of freezing younger (expected to be healthier) eggs now in hopes of getting pregnant with them later when circumstances at work and all have eased up a bit.
Before all of those was artificial insemination, clinically known as intrauterine insemination (IUI). We still provide this relatively simple, but surprisingly effective, boost to the egg fertilization process at Women’s Health Medical Group.
What is intrauterine insemination?
As the name directly implies, intrauterine insemination is a fertility treatment that involves placing sperm cells directly into the uterus. Although this eliminates all of the fun of the entire process, it also allows a much larger number of sperm to reach the hallowed ground of the fallopian tubes. This improves the chances of egg fertilization and pregnancy.
How is intrauterine insemination done?
Some older forms of “artificial insemination” simply placed the sperm into the vagina. As you would assume, the results weren’t as good as placing the sperm directly in the uterus. In IUI, sperm are washed and concentrated. They are then placed directly into the patient’s uterus around the time the ovary releases one or more eggs.
Since the sperm get what is, in effect, a head start, they have a much better chance of running the gauntlet, making it to the fallopian tube, swimming up it, and fertilizing the waiting egg.
Why is intrauterine insemination done?
While this may seem obvious, it’s not always that clear cut. Intrautrine insemination is used for these cases:
- Donor sperm. Whether your partner’s sperm doesn’t make the grade, whether you have a partner at all, or whether your partner is not capable of producing sperm, the frozen donor sperm are obtained and used IUI.
- Infertility. This is usually the first treatment when infertility is unexplained or somewhat of a surprise.
- Endometriosis-related infertility. This is often the first treatment for this type of infertility.
- Mild male factor infertility. Your partner’s sperm may have below-average concentration, may be weak swimmers, or may have other subtle abnormalities (such as size or shape) that limit their effectiveness. Using IUI can separate out the high performers, elevating the odds of their success.
- Cervical factor infertility. In some women, their cervical mucus is too thick, impeding the sperms’ efforts. Using IUI, bypasses the cervix.
If you’ve been having trouble getting pregnant, give us a call at Women’s Health Medical Group, (817) 346-5336. We’ll check your fertility, and maybe go old school, if necessary, with intrauterine insemination.