What is IUI?
Interuterine Insemination (IUI), also called artificial insemination, is when the donor’s sperm is inserted into your uterus around the time of ovulation.
If you have a regular period and no known health issues, IUI will likely be done on a natural cycle. If your doctor decides you may need a little help, you may be given artificial hormone stimulation to encourage ovulation.
The IUI procedure
The simple procedure doesn’t require time off work and is usually undertaken by a nurse. The IUI procedure is similar to having a pap smear. They will use a speculum to expand your vagina enough to insert the sperm using a plastic catheter.
The IUI process should not hurt, but you may feel some cramping after, as you can sometimes expect after a pap smear.
Your partner should be able to be with you during the procedure.
How much does IUI cost?
IUI is often recommended, or even required, as the starting point when trying to conceive as it is simpler and cheaper than IVF.
The costs for IUI can vary. If you use a known donor, there will be some costs involved to wash, test and store their sperm. If you use an unknown donor, you will need to buy enough of this sperm to last you through the many IUI cycles it may take to conceive all the children you have planned.
As a rough estimate, you can expect to pay around $1500 per IUI cycle, including the cost of the sperm and the procedure.
What are my chances of conceiving using IUI?
For a healthy woman with no known fertility issues, the chance of conceiving via IUI is around 20% each try (this is compared to 40-50% per embryo transfer using IVF).
What our lesbian parents say about IUI
“IUI has always felt like the right option for my wife and I. Aside from it being less expensive than IVF, we both trust in my wife’s body and it’s ability to make a baby and wanted to get pregnant in a way that would best honor that!” ~ Jenn, Alberta Canada
“We agreed with our doctor that IUI would be the best course to try first, since it is so much less costly and invasive than IVF, and it proved the best route for us – we had a successful pregnancy on the second try.” ~ Laura, Virginia US
“We are on a budget and we cannot currently afford to pay for IVF. I know that bundle of joy we want so badly doesn’t have a price tag, but we are doing what our paychecks will allow at this time. We will turn to the IVF method if both I and my wife cannot conceive using the IUI method.” ~ Samantha, Tennessee US
“IUI was the way for us to go for many reasons such as the cost and that it wasn’t time consuming in my case since it worked on the 1st try!” ~ Lorraine, Las Vegas US