A new method for intrauterine insemination (IUI) uses slow introduction techniques for the prepared sperm using an EVIE pump. This is a device that allows prepared sperm to be injected into the uterus slower than it occurs under the use of the traditional IUI method.
The EVIE device comprises of a catheter which is introduced into the uterus, the pump with a chronometer, an insemination syringe and a strap. Using the strap the device is fastened to the woman`s thigh. The pump then slowly injects prepared sperm into the uterus. During this process the woman can lead a normal way of life, removing the device several hours later. This patented device was presented at the conference of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) in Rome in 2010 and aroused a big interest. The EVIE product was tested both in Europe (CE marking), and in USA (FDA). It has been used in clinical practice since 2011.
The EVIE pump allows for slow (over 3-4 hours) injection of the prepared sperm into the uterus. Imitating the natural process, such a system of slow injection increases the possibility of fertilisation as a larger quantity of the motile sperm enter the uterus over a long period of time, increasing the possibility that the sperm reaches the ovocyte. One of the advantages of the method in comparison with the standard IUI procedure is in the prevention of sperm outflow to the vagina. During the traditional IUI procedure all prepared sperm is injected into the uterus at once, and a large quantity оf sperm reaches the ovum. At this time the process of fertilisation can be disrupted as during natural fertilisation the ampule part of the fallopian tubes is reached by just by small amount оf active sperm. Using a physiological system for slow sperm injection it is believed that the receptiveness of the ovum to sperm is increased and the physiological fertilisation process could be better. Initial studies using the EVIE system have shown that the possibility of success is similar to the in vitro fertilisation method (IVF) – which is a more invasive and more expensive method of infertility treatment.
Similar studies have been conducted in England, Germany and Israel. According to the results of those studies up to 30% of patients treated using the EVIE device were successfully fertilised. This value is very close to the success rate when using the IVF method. Furthermore, the group of patients treated using the EVIE device experienced double the amount of pregnancies compared to the use of traditional IUI techniques. At the beginning of treatment the majority of infertile couples are offered 3-6 traditional IUI procedures. The application of the EVIE method can help to improve the treatment results.