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If you are struggling with infertility, you have likely heard of intrauterine insemination or IUI and in vitro fertilization or IVF. These are currently two of the most popular fertility treatment methods in the country and can turn your dream of becoming a parent into a reality. To make it easier for you to thoroughly understand IVF and IUI and select the right treatment for you, we’ve created this handy comparison guide.


An IUI treatment involves inserting a male’s sperm directly into the woman’s uterus. The sperm is inserted following the woman’s ovulation in order to increase the chances of the sperm and egg coming together.

If you are under the age of 35 and are having trouble conceiving, IUI may be a good option. The procedure only takes a few minutes and many patients find that the cost is much lower than that of IVF (typically in the hundreds versus thousands). Since the IUI process is minimally invasive and less expensive than IVF, most women opt for two to three rounds of it before trying IVF.


During IVF, a woman’s ovaries are stimulated with hormones to produce multiple eggs during a single cycle. Once the eggs are produced, they are removed from the ovary so that they can be fertilized with sperm in a lab. The process of fertilizing the sperm in a lab is called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) and is done to create embryos. Approximately five days after this process, the embryos are inserted into the woman’s uterus.

One cycle of IVF typically costs anywhere from $12,000 to $20,000 or more, depending upon specific elements required for a given patient.  One positive regarding cost is that more insurance plans offer coverage than in the past.  Although IVF is a more expensive and a more invasive treatment than IUI, it is highly recommended for women with lower egg supply who are over 35 years old. It is generally more effective than IUI because of the amount of involvement that goes into the process.

Your age as well as health history and the cause of your infertility will determine whether you are a good candidate for IUI or IVF. It’s important to note that both of these treatments often lead to the birth of multiples because they are combined with fertility drugs.

Schedule an Appointment at Carolinas Fertility Institute

At Carolinas Fertility Institute, our goal is to help everyone who steps foot in our office become a parent. If you have been trying to conceive for a year with no success, we encourage you to schedule an appointment today. After evaluating your condition, we’ll inform you whether IUI or IVF is a good option.