What is Artificial Insemination

Artificial insemination, also known as intrauterine insemination or IUI, is a process in which a doctor inserts "washed" sperm into the uterus.

Initially, only married couples who have the desire to have children but can't conceive through the natural method because of poor motility of sperm or a low sperm count or have any other fertility problems, use this procedure.

Now, many single women and lesbian couples use IUI to help make their dreams of having children come true. It is possible because these women don't need a male partner or a husband but a sperm donor.

Choosing a Donor

But donor insemination and choosing a donor can be a tough and difficult decision to make. When choosing a donor, these women are able to search through hundreds of thousands of donors. They can search for donors by physical characteristics, such as height, eye color, hair color, and type of hair. Donors can also be chosen through ethnicity, hobbies, and professions.

Those searching for donors can read family medical backgrounds, essays, and some donors may even provide baby or lifetime pictures. Most donors choose not to be contacted in the future, but some leave that option open for the mother or child.

Doctors and fertility specialists usually have cryogenic banks that they prefer to use for fertility treatments. Donors are screened and chosen very carefully by the clinics. The cost of artificial insemination varies on the cryogenic bank, as well as the physician. On average the typical cost of donor sperm itself ranges from $350.00 to $600.00 per sample, plus cost of the procedure.

The Cost

Most of the time insurance does not cover artificial insemination. The overall cost per try for a single woman or a lesbian couple is near $1500.00. To many of them, this may seem like a small price to pay per attempt to make a dream come true.

Insemination Process

To begin the human artificial insemination process, many doctors will place the woman on fertility drugs to produce more eggs in order to increase the chance of getting pregnant. Women normally release one egg per month. If there are more eggs present, then the chances of a sperm cell penetrating an egg are increased. The sperm is placed into the uterus through a hard plastic tube. The sperm is washed, which means that the toughest sperm is used in this process.

If a woman does not have any issues, such as blocked tubes or ducts, many women will get pregnant within two to six attempts, or cycles. Typically, if a woman is not pregnant by a sixth cycle, other methods to get pregnant will be used. The chances of a woman becoming pregnant are between five and twenty percent. The chance increases with the use of fertility drugs to produce more eggs.

There are also couples who prefer to do the IUI procedure at home. But they do need to get consultation from fertility specialist and the kit.

Pros and Cons

There are pros and cons to donor insemination. The disadvantages to donor insemination include only knowing partial family history, the cost, and public perception. The advantages include making dreams come true for single woman and lesbians and creating a miracle to be showered in love and made entirely out of love. The positive effects surely outweigh the negatives; otherwise artificial insemination would not exist.

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Related Resources

Become a Single Mom by Choice

The IVF Success Program

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