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IUI - Intra-Uterine Insemination

IUI - Intra-Uterine Insemination
INTRA-UTERINE INSEMINATION (also known as Artificial Insemination) involves the insertion of a sample of treated and pre-washed sperm into the womb around the time an oocyte is released from the ovary. It is a fertility treatment that can be performed either in stimulated cycles (those in which the woman takes drugs that induce ovulation) or in natural (non-stimulated) cycles. Intrauterine insemination should be done when there is ovulation (release of an oocyte through the ovary) in order to increase the likelihood of fertilization.

Brief description of the treatment

  • In natural or non-stimulated cycles, insemination is performed between the 12th and 15th days of the menstrual cycle (the day on which the menstrual flow appears is counted as day 1), and blood tests and / or ultrasound scans may be needed to help determine when ovulation occurs.


    In stimulated cycles, the woman is treated with ovulation-inducing drugs and the development of oocytes is controlled by periodic ultrasound examinations. When the oocyte reaches the appropriate level of maturation, an injection is given to assist in its release from the ovary. In these cases, insemination should be done 36 to 40 hours later.


    Whether it is a natural cycle or a stimulated cycle, the man's sperm is treated so that spermatozoa with the highest quality and fertilization capacity are selected. In cases where it is not possible to obtain sperm from the partner (because the sperm does not have spermatozoa or the spermatozoa have previously been identitied as being of  poor quality; in cases where there is a risk of transmission of genetic diseases to offspring and in cases of women without a male partner) insemination with donor sperm may be used.


    For the intrauterine insemination procedure, the gynaecologist uses a speculum and inserts a catheter into the uterus  (small, flexible tube) loaded with previously selected and treated spermatozoa.


    It is a fast process, taking only a few minutes, and after insemination the woman should rest for a brief period. Shortly after, she can resume her normal life. In cases where the sperm used in the IUI is the male element of the couple, collection usually occurs on the day of insemination. When this is not possible, the sperm can be pre-frozen and thawing is performed on the day of insemination. In situations where donor sperm is used, thawing is also done on the same day.

In what situations is IUI used?

  • Ejaculation problems (of anatomical, psychological or neural origin)
  • Mildly low sperm parameters (variations on concentration or mobility)
  • Situations where the spermatozoa are immobilised by the woman's cervical mucus, which sometimes is too thick
  • Cases in which the woman's body produces antibodies that destroy sperm
  • Unexplained Infertility (as a first line approach)

It is only possible to perform intrauterine insemination if the sperm present normal or little altered parameters of sperm concentration, mobility and morphology.


IUI is also used in cases where it is necessary to use sperm donation. In these situations, the sperm used in Ferticentro comes either from donors selected by our clinic or from foreign certified sperm banks with excellent methods and rigorous quality control. The sperm is donated for free, leaving the couples to pay only for the laboratory costs involved in its collection, storage and treatment . The entire treatment takes place with the complete assurance of confidentiality; couples are informed and relevant consent is obtained throughout the process.

Treatment costs

  • To find out more about treatment costs, please fill our contact form.

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