Artificial Insemination: What is it? Because it is used? Benefits, Types, Preparation, Procedure and Risk Factors

It is a way to treat infertility. It involves the direct insertion of semen into a woman’s uterus.

Originally used in livestock, artificial insemination has been adapted for human use.

In people, sperm can originate in a woman’s male partner, unless the male is infertile or there is no male partner, for example, in the case of a single woman or a woman in a same-sex relationship.

Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is the most widely used method of artificial insemination, and it is the method with the best success rate, measured by the number of live births.

Why is artificial insemination used?

Artificial insemination can benefit couples or individuals with a variety of needs.

In the United States, 12 percent of women aged 15 to 44 can not conceive after one year of unprotected sex.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that a woman should consider consulting an infertility doctor to discuss treatment if she has not conceived within a year of trying, has irregular periods, is older than 35, or has had two or more miscarriages.

A couple that produces healthy sperm and eggs but can not have sex, possibly due to a medical condition, such as erectile dysfunction, can help to conceive in this way.

In women with cervical factor infertility, the cervix does not produce the mucus that helps sperm travel to the uterus or the mucus contains a substance that kills sperm. Artificial insemination can help to avoid this problem.

Endometriosis causes cells in the lining of the uterus to start growing outside the uterus, for example, in the ovaries or fallopian tubes. Artificial insemination can be successful in mild to moderate cases of endometriosis .

In rare cases, a woman may have an allergic reaction to certain proteins in the sperm. With artificial insemination. Most of these proteins can be removed before inserting the sperm.

Some men are unable to produce enough sperm for successful fertilization, or their sperm may not be mobile enough, which means that the sperm can not move effectively to the egg.

Some medical treatments carry the risk of infertility, for example, radiotherapy. Before treatment, a man can freeze some of his sperm for future use in artificial insemination.

A single woman or a couple in a same-sex relationship may want to raise a child without a man. They can use sperm from a donor.

In some couples, there is no clear reason for infertility, but IUI can be recommended. Of live births.


Artificial insemination is a revolutionary fertility procedure with numerous benefits.

The AI ​​technique creates a path to pregnancy for couples facing male infertility or female infertility. In addition, AI from the donor allows sperm to be tested and evaluated before insemination, which reduces the likelihood of transmitting a genetic disorder to the child.

Another benefit of artificial insemination is that it allows same-sex couples to conceive a child. A fertility specialist in your area can provide you with additional information about the benefits of artificial insemination.

Types of artificial insemination

There are two types of artificial insemination:

Intrauterine insemination (IUI):  Intrauterine insemination, or IUI, is the most common method of artificial insemination on the part of the husband (AIH). Often simpler and less expensive than in vitro fertilization (IVF), intrauterine insemination is an effective treatment for some forms of infertility.

When combined with ovarian stimulation, IUI, which places sperm in the fallopian tubes, produces high success rates of fertilization.

As a form of artificial insemination, IUI is good for couples with non-identifiable sources of infertility, as well as for couples in which the man has some sperm deficiencies or the woman has cervical mucus problems.

Intracervical insemination (ICI):  Intracervical insemination, or ICI, is one of the most commonly performed types of artificial insemination.

ICI is a relatively quick and usually painless procedure that deposits donor sperm directly on the cervix, drastically increasing the chances of the sperm passing through the uterus and the fallopian tubes, where it can fertilize the egg.

Typically less expensive than intrauterine insemination, the ICI procedure produces high success rates.

There are also other methods such as intrauterine intraperitoneal tube insemination (IUTPI) or intratubal insemination (ITI).

Normally, the sperm used comes from the male partner, unless the man is infertile or there is no man involved. In these cases, a donation of sperm is used.

Preparation of the semen sample

If donor sperm are needed, you can choose a known or anonymous donor willing to provide sperm. The sample will be donated to a sperm bank, quarantined and the donor tested to detect communicable diseases.

Donor sperm from a man who is not a sexual partner (such as a sperm bank, friend or relative) must remain frozen for at least 6 months before it can be used.

This is done so that the donor can be tested twice for 6 months to ensure that he or she does not have any number of infectious diseases, including the human immunodeficiency virus ( HIV ).

The sperm is kept frozen and thawed before performing any preparation. Frozen sperm are less effective than fresh sperm.

A chemical known as a cryoprotectant is added to the sample. This helps freeze and thaw sperm.

If the semen comes from the male partner, the couple will provide a sample.

This can be obtained using:

  • Masturbation
  • A collection condom, in which semen is collected during sexual intercourse.
  • Aspiration of surgical sperm, when sperm are removed directly from the male reproductive tract.
  • Vibratory or electrical stimulation, when the man can not ejaculate in the usual way.

Once the sperm sample has been collected, it is “washed” to remove any element that may interfere with fertilization.

The procedure

After a sample of semen has been prepared, it is ready for artificial insemination.

During IUI, the sperm is placed directly into the uterus with a thin catheter. The walls of the vagina are kept open using an instrument known as a speculum. The catheter enters the uterus through the cervix and the sperm is pushed through the catheter.

To get the best results, IUI usually takes place right after the woman has ovulated. This is when she is most fertile, since eggs have just been produced.

Most women ovulate approximately 2 weeks after the first day of the monthly period.

The doctor can give the woman an OPK (ovulation prediction kit). This is a device that detects hormone levels in urine or saliva. Give an accurate prediction of when you are going to ovulate.

Risk factor’s

There are some risks associated with artificial insemination.

Multiple births can occur if IUI is combined with fertility drugs, such as gonadotropin, there is a greater chance that the woman will give birth to twins or triplets. Having multiple births increases the chances of complications such as premature birth or miscarriage.

Nowadays, fertility drugs are usually used only in cases where endometriosis seems to be the cause of infertility.

Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) can cause a woman’s ovaries to swell after taking a combination of fertility drugs and IUI. It is rare and the symptoms are usually mild to moderate, but sometimes they can be serious.

In mild cases of OHSS, symptoms include swelling, mild abdominal pain and possibly nausea and vomiting. More severe cases may have dehydration, chest pain and shortness of breath.

Staying hydrated and taking acetaminophen usually relieves pain, but more severe cases may require hospital treatment.

In the USA UU., Success rates, or live births resulting from IUI, have been observed in 10 to 15 percent among women aged 41 to 42, and 5 percent in women over 42 years.

No more than six IUI cycles are recommended, since the chances of additional treatments being successful are very small.

At this stage, an alternative method, such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), should be tried.

What to expect after treatment

These techniques are performed on an outpatient basis and only require a short recovery time. You may experience cramping during the procedure, especially if sperm are inserted into the uterus. You may be advised to avoid strenuous activities for the rest of the day.

After treatment with IUI, the woman must wait 2 weeks before taking a pregnancy test in the home, because the hormones that are associated with pregnancy will not be measurable before that date.

For a more accurate result, the doctor may suggest a blood test.