Fertility Treatments Quick Guide

There are many fertility treatments available, with a host of different acronyms. One treatment that is suitable for one patient may not be suitable for another. Equally each treatment may provide a greater chance of success depending on a patient’s circumstances.

Our latest blog aims to provide a guide into the most common fertility treatments offered by Reproductive Health Group at our Cheshire IVF clinic, when they are typically used and what they cost.

If you would like any additional information about the treatments outlined below, or any of our other fertility treatments, don’t hesitate to contact us on 01925 202180 or by email here.


What is IVF?

IVF treatment is the process by which eggs are retrieved from the ovaries and fertilised with sperm to create embryos. At the optimum time, the embryos are replaced back into the womb and allowed to develop, implant and hopefully form a successful pregnancy.

When would IVF be used?

  • The patient has been diagnosed with unexplained infertility
  • The patient may have blocked fallopian tubes
  • The male partners fertility problems are not severe enough to warrant ICSI treatment
  • Fertility drugs or IUI treatment were not successful
  • Frozen sperm is being used
  • Frozen eggs or donated eggs are being used


What is ICSI?

ISCI treatment is used in nearly half of all IVF treatments and the most successful form of treatment for men who are infertile. ICSI differs from IVF in that the embryologist selects a single sperm to be injected directly into an egg, bypassing the natural fertilisation process.

When would ICSI be used?

ICSI is typically used when there is a problem or potential problem with the sperm to be used in an IVF cycle. Problems may include:

  • Very low sperm count
  • Poor morphology or motility
  • Low fertilisation rate during previous IVF cycles
  • Frozen sperm is being used in your treatment which is not of optimum quality


What is IMSI?

Similar to ICSI, IMSI treatment also involves inserting sperm directly into the egg, the only difference between the two procedures being the way that the sperm is selected. A high powered lens is used to observe the sperm in greater detail with the aim of improving the chance of pregnancy. The healthier the sperm and the egg, the healthier the resulting embryo and therefore the greater the chance of success. The IMSI microscope can magnify up to 6000 times allowing the embryologist to see potential abnormalities in the head of the sperm.

When would IMSI be used?

  • The male partner is over 35
  • Where a high number of abnormal sperm are found in a semen analysis
  • For couples who have had previously unsuccessful cycles
  • In patients where there is a history of miscarriage
  • For couples who have not achieved good quality embryos in previous cycles, – when the egg quality has appeared to be normal.


What is IUI?

IUI treatment or Intrauterine insemination is a relatively simple treatment which involves inserting prepared sperm into the uterus around the time of ovulation. The sperm is prepared by separating fast moving sperm from more sluggish sperm to ensure the best quality sperm is inserted. IUI can be performed with either the partner’s sperm or donor sperm.

When would IUI be used?

IUI may be used in the following circumstances:

  • Couples who have been trying for less than 2 years with no specific fertility issue.
  • Couples who have problems with sex such as impotence, premature ejaculation, vaginismus etc.
  • Couples in whom the woman’s cervical mucus is altered in amount and texture for the sperm to pass through.
  • Where the woman has mild/ minimal endometriosis.
  • Women undergoing insemination with donor sperm.

Ovulation Induction

What is Ovulation Induction?

Ovulation Induction involves the use of fertility drugs to help stimulate the development of one or two mature follicles in women whose ovaries do not develop and release a mature egg on their own every month. This treatment can be successful if there are no other identified causes of infertility.

When would Ovulation Induction be used?

Ovulation induction is typically used after all other fertility investigations have been carried out and irregular ovulation has been identified as the only problem.