Intrauterine Insemination widely known as IUI is a very well known option when it comes to treating infertility. This option is mostly used in cases of male infertility where the mobility of sperms is less or the quality of sperms is low. In this procedure, the sperm sample is prepared and directly delivered into a woman’s uterus during her ovulation period. This gives sperms a head start in the process of fertilization.
IUI works with or without the fertility drugs. However, to improve the chances of success in conception, your doctor will mostly prescribe you some fertility drugs. The drugs may be meant to stimulate ovaries and make them produce more eggs which will boost your chances of conceiving. So how do you decide when to use the fertility drugs? Your physician has to take into consideration a lot of factors before making this decision.
– Patient’s age is a major factor that determines if fertility drugs will be prescribed or not. When the infertility is caused by the age of a patient or due to unexplained causes, the drugs help the women produce a larger number of eggs while ovulating and thus increase the chances of getting pregnant.
– Even in the cases where infertility is male related, medication may be prescribed to in addition to IUI. This is to mend the causes like sperm morphology, low sperm count or poor sperm mobility.
– A woman produces one egg per cycle. But when the fertility drugs are used, a woman ovulates more than one egg. This is called superovulation. If at least one egg gets fertilized, superovulation increases the chances of pregnancy.
– There are multiple drugs that may be prescribed along with IUI. Most common of them are Clomid, Serophene, or clomiphene citrate. Drugs like human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), Follicle-stimulating Hormone (FSH) or hMG may also be prescribed. Clomid is taken orally for five days from the first day of the period whereas drugs like hCG are injected into the patient.
Though it increases the chances of pregnancy, fertility drugs used with IUI treatment has certain risk factors associated with it.
– These ovulation medications have increased risks of conceiving multiple babies. Twins, triplets or more. If you are only preparing for a single child, this might come as a surprise.
– Some fertility drugs like letrozole are found to be associated with an increased risk of birth defects in babies conceived through IUI.
– Many also fear of a connection between fertility drugs and risk of cancer in women. Some researchers have found that taking clomiphene citrate sometimes elevates the risk of breast cancer.
With all these positive and negative aspects of taking fertility drugs, it is always best to consult your physician before signing up for any treatment. Understanding the basics and then taking up any procedure can give you better results in the long run.