By Neus Ferrando Gilabert BSc, MSc (embryologist).
Last Update: 04/15/2014

Before you make up your mind to undergo an artificial insemination, is is advisable to be well informed about the whole procedure and to visit your doctor so s/he can give your the best option for your case.

However, in general terms, you will be asked for your case history as well as your own and  your partner’s  physical conditions, in order to establish the starting point.

The different sections of this article have been assembled into the following table of contents.

Ultrasound, bloodwork & serology

The doctor will perform an ultrasound to rule out any possible problems such as uterine malformations that could have some effect on the fertilisation, the embryo implantation or the normal development of the pregnancy.

To discard any kind of hormonal pathologies the woman should undergo a test in which her hormone levels will be measured. Blood samples will be collected at specific days of her period: between days 3 and 5 the concentrations of the basal serum estradiol levels, progesterone, FSH and inhibin will be analysed.

In addition to this, both members of the couple should undergo a special test named serology in order to ensure that there is no risk of having hepatitis B, hepatitis C, HIV, rubella, toxoplasmosis or syphilis. All of these diseases could be transmitted to the fetus or the staff working in the laboratory.

Tubal patency assessment

Tubal patency test is carried out through certain techniques such as the hysterosalpingography (HSG) – a radiologic procedure in which the female reproductive system is analysed after injecting a liquid to intensify the image and see the contrasts.

Another procedure is the hysterosonography, which is a noninvasive technique consisting of introducing a saline fluid through the cervix so that it becomes easier to observe, in real time, what is happening insider the uterus and the tubes.

Other requirements

If all the previous tests are favorable, it is advisable to proceed with the artificial insemination, as long as the patients meet the following requirements:

  • The woman has, at least, one functional Fallopian tube.
  • The man has, after the sperm capacitation, more than 3 million of spermatozoa in the sperm sample after the capacitation; this sperm has a motility of above the 15%. If the man does not meet this requirement, turning to a donor is the best option for the artificial insemination.
  • The patient’s age is also a factor to be taken into account, because it is not advisable to proceed with the artificial insemination if the woman is over 36.
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Authors and contributors

 Neus Ferrando Gilabert
BSc, MSc
Bachelor's Degree in Biology from the University of Valencia (UV). Postgraduate Course in Biotechnology of Human Assisted Reproduction from the Miguel Hernández University of Elche (UMH). Experience managing Embryology and Andrology Labs at Centro Médico Manzanera (Logroño, Spain). More information
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