Insemination using a partner’s sperm (IUI)
In both cases the procedure involves the insertion of the adequately prepared semen of the patient’s partner into the uterine cavity, using a special catheter. Prior to the treatment the patient undergoes hormonal stimulation to increase the probability of pregnancy. After confirming the maturity of the Graafian follicle on the basis of hormonal tests and ultrasound imaging, the treating physician will decide on the date of the insemination. On the day of scheduled insemination the partner donates sperm, which is then subjected to a special treatment in which it is rinsed and centrifuged. This allows to obtain a fraction of sperm with the greatest fertile potential. The procedure of semen preparation lasts approximately 2 hours, therefore the semen should be delivered to the laboratory sufficiently in advance. In order to perform the procedure the laboratory of embryology has to have the possibility to prepare at least several million sperm cells.
The insemination procedure takes place during a standard visit, and usually it is not painful. After the procedure the patient can walk, drive, etc. Occasionally patients may experience light spotting after the procedure.
Insemination with donor sperm (AID)
In the case of insemination with donor sperm the procedure is performed in a standard way (like in the case of intrauterine insemination with a partner’s sperm), but with the use of semen originating from an anonymous donor. Donor semen may be used by the couple where the absence of sperm cells in the male partner’s semen was confirmed, and the treatment is unsuccessful.
The donors are young men (up to 40 years of age) who underwent detailed screening tests for the potential risk of carrying infectious, mental and genetic diseases. In addition, every prospective donor is subjected to genetic analysis – karyotype (a set of chromosomes) testing. This way we exclude the donors who may be the carriers of balanced or Robertsonian translocations, which may have impact on the occurrence of genetic defects in offspring. Donor sperm can be used for the purposes of assisted reproduction methods only after the lapse of the withdrawal period (minimum 6 months) and after the performance of virological and microbiological tests. Data of the sperm donors and recipients are kept secret; the same applies to the fact of using the sperm bank by a given couple. A couple select the donor on the basis of a blood type, Rh factor and external morphological features: height, eye colour, hair.