Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a fertility treatment carried out at a predetermined time for optimal fertilization, and involves introducing prepared and concentrated sperm into the uterus by using a speculum to open the cervix and a catheter to deposit the sperm. The cervix, or opening in the uterus, is a good seal, so generally there are no precautions necessary after IUI. Exercise and sexual intercourse will not affect the outcome of IUI. Sometimes after IUI patients experience limited bleeding from the speculum, and cramping may be experienced either from the speculum or the on-set of ovulation, but this does not typically indicate a problem with the procedure and a short rest will usually relieve these issues. The only precaution necessary after IUI is to assume you will get pregnant, and in preparation you should abstain from using tobacco, alcohol, illegal drugs, or any prescription medications not approved by your gynecologist.
The cervix is a strong, protective barrier between the outside and the delicate uterus. Once the cervix has been temporarily opened to deposit the sperm inside the uterus during an IUI procedure, it will immediately reseal to hold the sperm inside. Some doctors will suggest a patient lie in the treatment room for 10-20 minutes following the IUI procedure, but this is not necessary for success. Exercise, strenuous activity, and sexual intercourse will not hinder the outcome of IUI, and having sexual intercourse may increase the chances of conceiving. None of these activities will cause the sperm to fall out of the uterus or prevent the sperm from moving toward or penetrating the egg.
After IUI, some patients experience slight temporary bleeding from the speculum. The bleeding is similar to the amount typically observed during a routine gynecological exam, but is not cause for alarm and does not indicate a failed IUI. Patients may also experience some cramping after IUI. The cramping could either be due to the speculum used during IUI or could be normal cramping often experienced at the time of ovulation. Resting for a short time may stop the bleeding and relieve the cramping.
The only precaution you do need to take after IUI is to assume you are or will soon be pregnant, and remember that your health will directly impact the health of your developing baby. You should not smoke, drink alcohol, take illegal drugs, and all prescription medications you are taking should be discussed with your gynecologist. In addition, you should take prenatal vitamins and eat a healthy diet.