Artifical insemination is an extremely common fertility treatment. The procedure is less invasive and less expensive than some other types of treatment. Many couples who are having trouble conceiving try it before moving on to IVF.
While intrauterine insemination is the most common type of artificial insemination, there are other options for couples who are struggling with unique fertility challenges.
By far, the most common type is intrauterine insemination. In this procedure, a deposit of the male partner’s sperm is deposited into the female’s uterus using a long, thin tube called a catheter. The goal is to get the sperm as close to the egg as possible to improve the chances of fertilization. There are usually no drugs and the procedure is quick and painless. Any discomfort would be similar to that experienced during a Pap smear.
Intrauterine insemination is good for couples who experience poor sperm quality, sexual dysfunction of some sort or poor cervical conditions. It’s also a great option for same sex female couples or single women who want become pregnant using donated sperm.
Less common is intracervical insemination where a sample of the male partner’s sperm is placed in the woman’s cervix. From there, the sperm travels into the uterus and Fallopian tubes on its own.
The process is not as successful as intrauterine insemination but it’s less expensive so some couples take this option. However, if you have thick cervical mucus or poor sperm quality, it’s probably not the right treatment for you. It can be a good option for single women or LGBTQ couples.
In this option, the sperm are placed directly into the Fallopian tubes. That means they don’t have to swim through the cervix or uterus. They are placed exactly where they need to be to reach and fertilize an egg.
Intratubal insemination can be performed in two ways. In the first, a catheter will be used to deposit a sperm sample into the Fallopian tube. The second method is more invasive and involves putting a camera into the abdomen to locate the Fallopian tubes so the sperm can be placed there directly. While it’s the most invasive, this can help couples who don’t ovulate regularly or have thick cervical mucus that can decrease sperm’s motility.
If you’d like to learn more about the three types of artificial insemination, please call our office today to schedule a consultation. One of these treatment options may be the key to have the family you’ve always dreamed of!