For many couples who struggle with conceiving, the cost of IVF and IUI can be devastating–if not impossible. This is why it’s so exciting that there may be a less expensive option that makes IUI procedures just as successful than IVF, without the cost.
Typically, intrauterine insemination (IUI) works this way: Sperm is injected via a catheter directly into the uterus, minimizing the distance it has to travel to the fallopian tubes–which could increase the possibility that an egg will be fertilized. Sadly, it’s just not always effective.
According to The Telegraph, researchers in the UK may have found a way to make IUI procedures just as successful as IVF by using a product called “Evie.” It is a one-time-use, slow-release pump, which releases sperm into the uterus over a four-hour period, according to Epigee Women’s Health. Even better, after the short procedure, you can go about your day as usual.
Apparently, it’s the slow-release that makes all the difference–it decreases the possibility that the egg could get overwhelmed by a rush of sperm and not get fertilized at all (there’s really no way not to be slightly gross about this).
So far, it’s yielded good results, as according to Reproductive Sciences, the company behind Evie, the product has had a 30% success rate in the clinical trials–which is 2.5 times more effective than standard IUI procedures. Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that the product is best used when the participant is under 35 years old, where “male subfertility” is an issue, for women with grade 1-2 endometriosis, and for general donor insemination (as in the case of same-sex couples).
As of now, Evie isn’t available for consumer use, but it certainly sounds like it could be soon. It could just make all the difference for families struggling with infertility.