open menu
Review Us

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)

As a popular fertility treatment, intrauterine insemination (IUI) in Ontario has been successfully used for years to help increase the chances of fertilization for couples trying to conceive. ONE Fertility Kitchener Waterloo uses advanced state-of-the-art technology for this delicate procedure.

What Is Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)?

To get a better understanding of the intrauterine insemination treatment in Kitchener, the procedure can be compared to in vitro fertilization. Both are artificial fertility treatments focused on helping a couple become parents.

IUI entails injecting the sperm into the uterus for fertilization as opposed to using reproductive technology in a lab as seen with IVF. The IUI treatment is done near the time of the woman’s ovulation.

Also referred to as donor insemination or artificial insemination, the goal of IUI is to provide the sperm with a higher chance of entering the fallopian tube to fertilize the egg.

How Does IUI Work?

While an IUI procedure is similar in theory to IVF, the process of how intrauterine insemination works is a less complicated one.

At ONE Fertility Kitchener Waterloo, our fertility specialists perform a complete medical history before ordering diagnostic testing to determine the conditioning of the uterus. Bloodwork, ultrasounds, and prescribed medication are often part of the course of our IUI treatment.

Ovarian Stimulation

The IUI process begins with ovarian stimulation. This may be referred to as enhanced follicular recruitment. Hormone medications are administered to promote multiple egg production.

Sperm Preparation

Once the time of ovulation is determined, the sperm specimen or donation will be prepared for placement. To prepare the sperm before the IUI treatment, the collected specimen is divided to retrieve the sperm with the highest morphology and motility. These chosen sperm are “washed” and contained in a solution that mimics the fluid of the fallopian tubes.

Sperm Transfer

A small IUI tube is inserted through the cervix to ensure the sperm is properly injected into the uterus. This actual procedure takes only minutes. You may experience mild cramping and bleeding for the first two days afterwards. Regular activities, including sexual intercourse, can be resumed shortly after the procedure.

Pregnancy Test

It is recommended to wait until at least two weeks after the IUI procedure before performing a pregnancy test. This timeline prevents false negatives and positives from appearing on home pregnancy tests. A blood test will be scheduled on the 14th day after the IUI procedure.

Why Might You Need IUI Treatment?

IUI treatment is recommended for several infertility situations, including unexplained infertility cases.

There are a few reasons why you may opt for IUI treatment during your conception journey.

  • Donated Sperm: When a woman is using donated sperm for fertilization, often times an IUI treatment is performed. Frozen specimens are retrieved from a sperm bank and thawed before use in the IUI procedure.
  • Endometriosis-Related Infertility: Endometriosis is a condition wherein the tissue lining the walls of the uterus (endometrium) grows outside of the uterine cavity. Along with medication to ensure the eggs are of good quality, an IUI procedure is done to increase the chances of fertilization.
  • Mild Male Factor Infertility: Commonly referred to as subfertility, this condition is seen with abnormalities in the size, shape, or motility of the sperm. An IUI procedure entails preparing the sperm to separate the good from the bad before injecting into the uterus.
  • Cervical Factor Infertility: Medical conditions and previous scarring can cause the mucus production of the cervix to become too thick to properly move the sperm along to the fallopian tubes. The IUI treatment bypasses the cervix to ensure the sperm are directly placed in the uterus.
  • Ovulatory Factor Infertility: A common infertility condition is the woman’s inability to ovulate frequently or at all. This may be caused by the ovary, or a lack of reproductive hormones being produced by the pituitary gland or hypothalamus. IUI is one treatment for such a case, especially where the egg count is low.
  • Semen Allergy: Although rare, the proteins within the sperm can cause an allergic reaction within the vagina walls. These same proteins are removed from the sperm during the IUI procedure preparation, allowing the treated sperm to be injected into the uterus without reaction.

What Is the Success Rate for IUI Treatment?

As with regular fertilization trials, the success rate depends highly on the infertility diagnosis and any discovered causes. The potential success of an IUI treatment can be measured based on testing before and after the procedure.

For more precise calculations, an unexplained fertility condition can offer a success rate of up to 10% per cycle. By combining this form of treatment with fertility drugs, the numbers increase up to 25% success rate.

If a fallopian tube is discovered to have a form of blockage, the fertilization rate varies from 12% to 38%, with the higher rate with a blockage closer to the uterus itself.

A male-factor infertility diagnosis often provides a success rate of nearly 17%.

What to Expect after the IUI Treatment

After the IUI procedure, it is recommended that you live life as if you are in fact pregnant. This means you should avoid using alcohol, tobacco and recreation drug products, stay active, follow a healthy diet, and avoid stress.

Physically, the first three days after the procedure may present mild cramping, light posting of blood, or overall discomfort. These symptoms should dissipate by the fourth day. By day six, the spotting and cramping may return in addition to nausea, breast tenderness, and fatigue.

On day 14, it is time to return to the clinic for a pregnancy test. A positive result will require the hormone levels to be monitored until the beginning of the second trimester. A negative result will see another test performed.

ONE Fertility Kitchener’s IUI Treatment

Our IUI procedure at ONE Fertility Kitchener Waterloo is part of our comprehensive fertility care program. We help our patients with one-on-one planning for their distinct needs and comfort levels. Contact us today to discuss how we can help you along this journey to parenthood.



4271 King St East, Suite 200
Kitchener, ON
N2P 2X7

Working Hours

Monday-Friday: 7am-3pm
Saturday-Sunday: 8am-12pm

Contact Us

Phone: 519.650.0011
Fax: 519.650.0033