IVF and IUI: A Comparative View

Posted by drshivanisachdevgour on February 20th, 2019

Many patients wish to discuss the issue of IUI vs. IVF during consultations. So, the question raises that which treatment is superior in their particular cases? Actually, neither treatment is inherently superior to the other; the treatment that is best suited to each individual case depends on a variety of factors.

Based on the unique factors of patient such as, age, medical history, infertility factors, finances, and treatment goals - which fertility treatment would be best suited to related patient’s case? IUI or IVF? Or another treatment altogether?

IUI (Intra Uterine Insemination): It is a procedure in which sperm are "washed" and placed into the uterus through a catheter. The male partner produces a semen sample by masturbation. The sperms are then separated from the seminal plasma, white blood cells, prostaglandins, and other "debris" which are filtered out during natural intercourse. A speculum is inserted into the woman's vagina and a catheter with an attached syringe, containing the washed sperm, is inserted through the cervix into the uterus. The specimen is injected and the catheter and the speculum are removed.

IVF (In Vitro Fertilisation): literally means ‘fertilisation in glasses. You may have also heard the term ‘test tube babies’ but these days the procedure involves placing an egg and sperm together in a plastic dish to fertilise, rather than in a test tube. IVF refers to a technique of assisted reproduction where the egg and sperm are fertilised outside of the body to form an embryo. This embryo is then transferred to the uterus to hopefully implant and become a pregnancy

Comparison IUI to IVF

Both IUI and IVF can help patients achieve successful pregnancy; however, the two treatments offer distinct advantages and disadvantages when compared to one another. For example:

IUI Requires Shorter Treatment Time Than IVF: Some patients prefer IUI as a first course of treatment because it requires a shorter amount of treatment time overall than IVF. In theory, it is possible for a woman to become pregnant within a month of having her first period after consulting with Doctors. If she elects to undergo fertility treatment using the IUI method. Conversely, a single IVF cycle requires four to six weeks to complete prior to egg retrieval. Then, there will be another three to five days before the embryos are transferred.

IUI is Less Expensive Than IVF: While the variables that can affect the cost of patient’s treatment are beyond the scope of this article, it is true that an IUI cycle is always significantly less expensive than an IVF cycle. IUI is simply a less intensive procedure. A good candidate for IUI may consider undergoing multiple cycles of IUI before moving on to IVF; the cost of three or four IUI cycles would be comparable to a single IVF cycle.

IVF Has Greater Success Rates Than IUI: You may at this point be wondering why patients wouldn’t elect to undergo IUI as a first course of treatment when it is both faster and less expensive than IVF. In short, most patients are more likely to become pregnant via IVF than they are via IUI.

Ø  Intra-uterine Insemination (IUI) Treatment and Procedure

Ø  How IVF is Different from IUI?

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