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What is artificial insemination?

Insemination (Intra Uterine Insemination, IUI) is often the first fertility treatment used in the event of infertility due to the male or infertility due to unknown origin. Insemination is prescribed in case of mild male infertility (problems with the number, motility or shape of sperm cells or the presence of anti-sperm antibodies), infertility due to cervical factor and in the treatment of patients with unclear infertility. In insemination the best motile sperm separated from the semen sample are placed in the woman’s uterine cavity using special catheter at the time of ovulation. Because insemination takes place in the natural environment, the fallopian tube, at least one of the fallopian tubes must be healthy. Successful insemination treatment also requires that the semen sample contains sufficient motile sperm after washing; otherwise, treatment with in vitro fertilization is the treatment option.

Insemination can be carried out according to the woman’s natural menstrual cycle or hormone-timed ovulation. In case of natural menstrual cycle the IUI procedure is timed with an ovulation test that enables to determine the moment of ovulation at home on the basis of urine sample. IUI is carried out 24-36 hours after the positive ovulation test. Insemination is carried out on washed sperm 12 to 42 hours after the positive test, ie as close as possible to the time of ovulation. The best results in insemination are usually achieved when hormone medication is combined with insemination. However, it is important to monitor the treatment properly to ensure that the ovaries do not develop too many follicles, which increases the risk of multiple pregnancy. The ideal number is 1 to 2 ripe eggs. The insemination itself is performed 24 to 42 hours after the hCG injection that produces ovulation.

The semen sample is given on the day of insemination and processed to distinguish the best moving sperm. In this way, sperm antibodies and other impurities that may be present in the semen are reduced and sperm motility and fertility improved. In some cases, pre-frozen semen may also be used for insemination.

The success of insemination treatment is primarily influenced by the age of the woman, but also by the quality of the semen and the success of the timing of insemination. The success rate of insemination, combined with hormone therapy, is at best 10-20% per cycle. Insemination treatments are usually repeated a few times, after which it is advisable to discuss with your doctor other possible treatment options. After the insemination treatment, we usually switch to IVF treatment.

Read more about IVF treatment.

How does artificial insemination work? Insemination step by step

  1. Can be done in a natural cycle. The ovulation is confirmed by a home ovulation test. Procedure continues as in steps 3 and 4.
  2. Alternatively, hormone therapy is used to maturate 1 to 2 egg cells: tablets or injections stimulate follicular growth. Thereafter, ovulation is achieved by hCG hormone injection. Treatment monitoring is important: vaginal ultrasound is done 1-3 times per treatment period.
  3. The semen sample is delivered in the morning of the insemination. The semen is processed and injected into the uterus later the same day.
  4. Pregnancy test is done 2 weeks after insemination.
  5. Pregnancy ultrasound is done 3 weeks after the positive pregnancy test.

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Insemination with donor sperm

Insemination treatment can also be performed with donated sperm. In Ovumia we have our own sperm bank with registered Finnish donors. If you wish, we can also order donor sperm from international sperm banks, European Sperm Bank or Cryos. When donor sperm or donor eggs are used in a fertility treatment, the recipient of the donated cells will meet with a psychologist to have counseling before the treatment begins. Statutory psychological counseling is designed to make sure that the patient is considering the importance of using donated germ cells from all angles before starting treatment.

Read more about treatments with donated sperm.

Do you live abroad?

Please contact our international patient coordinator to ask for more information or to book an appointment:

Nina Pohjanaho

International patient coordinator
Nina Pohjanaho
+358 40 623 4443
fi sv en

Why choose us?

  • Over 25 years of experience in assisted reproduction methods with donated sperm.
  • No queuing. Smooth and fast process.
  • Fertility treatments up to 46 years. (Up to 50 years in Tallinn, Estonia.)
  • Non-anonymous donors from our own sperm bank.
  • Also anonymous donors available in Tallinn.
  • Excellent results.
  • Personal service and satisfied customers.
  • Affordable prices.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is artificial insemination painful?
A: No, insemination is not usually painful. Feeling pain is of course always individual and varies by person to person. Our experienced team of nurses and doctors do their best to make the experience as comfortable and pain free for you as possible.

Q: Can you have artificial insemination with your tubes tied?
A: Unfortunately you can not have artificial insemination with your tubes tied. Artificial insemination takes place in the natural environment: in the fallopian tube of a woman. This means that at least one of the fallopian tubes must be open and healthy. If your tubes are tied the egg won’t be able to pass from the fallopian tube to fertilize. However, you might still be a good candidate for in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment. Please have a talk with your doctor about your possibilities. You can also read more about IVF treatments here.

Q: How much does it cost to get artificially inseminated?
A: How much is artificial insemination depends on two things. The first thing that needs to be considered is the sperm that is used in the treatment. If the insemination is done with partner’s own sperm, the price is cheaper. If you need donor sperm, you also have to pay for the sperm. It is more affordable to use sperm from our own sperm bank than to order sperm from the other sperm banks.

Another thing that effects to how much does it cost to be artificially inseminated is your citizenship. In Finland we have an excellent social security system. Our Social Insurance institution, KELA, financially assists Finnish residents by paying part of their treatments. This means that Finnish residents with KELA-card get Kela-refund from certain treatments of ours. This is why we have two different pricelists: one for Finnish residents and one for foreign customers.
Please, have a look at our Pricelist for foreign customers here.
Please, have a look at our Pricelist for Finnish residents here.

Q: Does insurance cover artificial insemination?
A: Please contact your insurance company for detailed information.

Q: How to prepare for artificial insemination
A: There is actually not much you can do to prepare for the artificial insemination. You can live normal, healthy life, but be sure to follow your doctor’s and nurse’s orders every step of the way.

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See also

Our experts


Chief Medical Officer, M.D., PhD, MBA, Specialist in Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine



M.D., Ph.D, Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology



M.D., Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology



M.D., Ph.D, Specialist in Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine



M.D., Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology



Medical Director in Tampere, M.D., Ph.D, Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine



M.D., Ph.D, Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine



Chief of Development, M.D., Ph.D, Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine



Medical Director in Jyväskylä, M.D., Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology



M.D., Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Reproductive Medicine



M.D., Specialist in Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Perinatology, sexual therapist (NACS)