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IUI

KAF-icon PATIENT INFORMATION GUIDE 

Whereas we do not provide IUI treatment at our Beacon Clinic, we work with IVF Clinics in Ireland and Internationally who will provide IUI for you, while we manage your monitoring up to and after treatment.

What is the Difference Between an IUI and IVF?

Both intrauterine insemination (IUI) and in vitro fertilization (IVF) are fertility treatments used to help a person who is struggling to conceive. The main difference between an IUI and IVF treatments are: IVF is a process involving egg stimulation, retrieval, fertilization, and transfer; whereas, an IUI injects sperm into a uterus to decrease the sperm’s travel time to the egg.

People are often confused about the differences between an IUI and an IVF treatment and the medical terminology for fertility treatments are a learning curve when you first start the process. Learning the acronyms can be overwhelming so let’s break down IUI and IVF to clarify the difference between these fertility treatments.

IVF treatment is a process that consists of five steps including:

  1. pre-cycle diagnostic testing
  2. stimulation of the ovaries to produce several eggs during one cycle,
  3. retrieval of the eggs from each ovary,
  4. fertilization of the eggs in the laboratory via conventional fertilization or ICSI, and then
  5. transfer of the resulting embryos into the uterus.

The chance of pregnancy from IVF heavily depends on the age of the woman, the primary cause of infertility, and also depends on some factors related to the quality of the IVF laboratory.

IUI is a fertility treatment where sperm is inserted directly into a woman’s uterus during ovulation; decreasing the journey for the sperm to the egg. During ovulation, the woman produces one egg that is picked up by the end of the fallopian tube where it waits to meet the sperm. An IUI deposits higher concentrations of good quality sperm close to where the egg is waiting which increases the chances that the egg and sperm will unite.

KAF-icon IUI PATIENT TREATMENT PROTOCOL 

FOLIC ACID.  You should take the recommended amount of folic acid daily before the scheduled treatment cycle. This is Department of Health advice for all women wishing to conceive and not just for assisted conception treatment. This vitamin has been shown to reduce the chance of spina bifida and is available from chemists. You should continue with it for as long as you are trying to conceive and for the first three months of pregnancy. Also, it is good advice to eat a balanced diet with plenty of vegetables and raw fruit.

SMOKING. Smoking can be dangerous during pregnancy and can also decrease your chance of conceiving. Therefore, it is imperative that you do not smoke.

CONSENT.  Both partners prior to commencing treatment must sign a consent to treatment by insemination form.

NECESSARY TESTING. A full set of Viral Screening for HIV, Hepatitis B (Surface and Core) and Hepatitis should be completed within 90 days of initial IUI procedure. This is as per EU Guidelines. A clear Rubella screen should be available for the female undergoing IUI procedure within 2 years of treatment. It is also recommended that all females attempting to achieve a pregnancy should have Cervical Smear tests carried out as per National Guidelines.

 KAF-icon WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE TREATMENT BEGINS

Before commencing with the proposed treatment, please ensure you have been given the following information.

 1      The limitation and possible outcomes of the proposed treatment

2      The possible side effects and risks of treatment

3      The technique involved

4      All alternative treatments

5      The costs involved and costs of alternative treatment

6      The availability of counselling facilities

7      The possible disruption to your normal life

KAF-icon STARTING TREATMENT 

Day 1 of your Menstrual Cycle – please contact the clinic. Should this fall at the weekend please commence your medication as prescribed and call the clinic on the next day it is open. The purpose of this phone call is to inform us that you are starting treatment and also to book your first monitoring Ultrasound Scan with us. This first scan will be booked between Day 8 and 12 depending on the length of your cycle.

Day 2.  You should start your prescribed medications as follows; Synarel Nasal Spray – take one sniff in each nostril morning and eveningMenopur/Gonal F/Puregon – commence your injectable stimulation medication at the dosage prescribed to you on the EVENING/MORNING (as advised by Doctor) of Day 2.

Day 8 – 12. You will attend the clinic for your Ultrasound Scan. These scans are normally performed trans-vaginally and will require an empty bladder. Dr. Ayers or one of our Fertility nurses will perform your scan. These scans will need to be repeated every 2-3 days until the criteria for treatment has been met.  An average cycle will require 1-3 scans.

When you are deemed to be ready for your insemination you will be given further instruction regarding when to take your final Synarel and Stimulation medication (Menopur/Gonal F/Puregon)  and finally your trigger injection (Ovitrelle) to encourage ovulation.  You will also be contacted your treatment co-ordinator at your selected Clinic and given a date and time to attend there for your procedure.

Occasionally a follicle does not develop in which case the treatment will need to be abandoned. This is a natural occurrence and usually the advice will be to proceed with treatment again on the following cycle.

In the event that you were to produce too many follicles you may also be cancelled so as to avoid the potential occurrence of Ovarian Hyperstimulation (OHSS).

KAF-icon INTRA- UTERINE INSEMINATION (Partner)

When the correct date has been determined you will be given an appointment time for your treatment. Your partner will be asked to attend the unit 1 – 2 hours before the appointment time to provide a semen sample. He should abstain from intercourse/ejaculation for 2 – 3 days beforehand.

Insemination will occur in the Theatre Department of your selected Clinic. This Theatre operates a ‘Clean Air’ environment.  In order to maintain this, it is essential that you do not wear any make up, fake tan, perfume, body products etc.  All jewellery must be removed.  You will be given a special gown to wear and your hair and feet will also be covered.

This is usually a simple painless procedure lasting 5 to 10 minutes. The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis.  One of the doctors will carry out this procedure.

Please commence your Progesterone Support as prescribed after your IUI procedure. 

KAF-iconINTRA-UTERINE INSEMINATION WITH DONOR SPERM

When the correct date has been determined you will be given an appointment time for your treatment.

Insemination will occur in the Theatre Department of IMI Clane.  The theatre operates with a ‘Clean Air’ environment.  In order to maintain this, it is essential that you do not wear any make up, fake tan, perfume, body products etc.  All jewellery must be removed.  You will be given a special gown to wear and your hair and feet will also be covered.

This is usually a simple painless procedure lasting 5 to 10 minutes. The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis.  One of the doctors will carry out this procedure.

Please commence your Progesterone Support as prescribed after your IUI procedure. 

KAF-icon FOLLOW UP

We advise that you carry out a pregnancy test 14 days after your IUI procedure. Please contact the clinic with the result of this test.

If the test is positive we recommend that you have a blood test to confirm this result and the level of Bhcg hormone present in your system.  This can be carried out either in the clinic or with your GP.

Once the pregnancy has been confirmed we will book you in for an early Pregnancy Scan at approximately 6 weeks. You will also be required to give details of the outcome of any pregnancy resulting from your treatment.

If the test is negative, you can either re-commence treatment or book a review appointment with Dr. Ayers to discuss your case further.

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