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Artificial Insemination

Artificial insemination makes it possible for infertile couples and same sex couples to have their own biological children. Artificial insemination has come a long way from its inception in the 1980s. Some of the most popular types of artificial insemination procedures are listed below.

Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection

Intracytoplasmic sperm injection is a procedure that is often used if a man has a low sperm count, or if a woman has an allergy to sperm. A doctor injects fertility drugs into a woman's ovaries, and then injects sperm into the eggs she produces. The embryos are then placed in the woman's uterus so they can mature.

Warming Up the Oven

In "warming up the oven", a woman takes fertility drugs to increase her chance of getting pregnant before the insemination. A woman takes fertility drugs at the beginning of the woman's menstrual cycle to increase the number of eggs she produces. Warming up the oven can cause multiple births. The success rate for fertility drugs decreases with a woman's age. Women over 40 may need to take fertility treatments several months to boost the chance of conception.

Intrauterine Insemination

Intrauterine insemination is the most popular insemination procedure for infertile couples and same sex couples. During the intrauterine insemination procedure, a doctor deposits sperm in the uterus. This procedure is so popular because when the sperm is placed in the uterus, it is closer to the fallopian tubes, increasing the chance of pregnancy.

Before the intrauterine procedure, the male donor provides a sperm sample that's tested and "washed" to separate it from other substances in semen, and then it's injected with a catheter into the woman's vagina and directed towards the fallopian tubes.

Intracervical Insemination

A doctor deposits sperm into the cervix during Intracervical Insemination, another quick and painless form of artificial insemination. ICI increases the chances of sperm attaching to the fallopian tubes and causing pregnancy. It costs less than other insemination procedures, and results in more pregnancies than other methods.

Artificial Insemination by Donor

Single women, same-sex couples and some married women choose to be inseminated with sperm from a donor dubbed AID (artificial insemination by donor). Prospective sperm donors go through an exhaustive process before they are allowed to participate. Doctors examine their medical and sexual history and if they pass screening they may be allowed to provide sperm for several pregnancies. A doctor monitors a woman's menstrual cycle until she releases an egg. He then deposits the donor sperm into her uterus. Since the chance of pregnancy increases when the timing is right, your significant other or donor's sperm must either be frozen and thawed (its called sperm cryopreservation) and then released at the time of ovulation, or you better be pretty quick with the cup in the bathroom, buddy.

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