4 Types of Fertility Treatments and Their Odds of Success

If you and your partner have been struggling to conceive, it may be time to look into fertility treatments. But which treatment is right for you? The best way to make the decision is to talk to a fertility specialist. However, you can go into your appointment armed with information about some common treatments and their odds of success.



Image via Flickr by Charles Williams

There are a number of available fertility drugs, but clomiphene and gonadatrophins are among the most common. These help to regulate a woman’s hormones and trigger the release of eggs.

About four out of five women who take clomiphene ovulate within three months of beginning treatment. Between 30 and 40 percent of those who ovulate are able to conceive by the third treatment cycle. With gonadatrophins, the pregnancy rate is 15 percent for those who time their intercourse correctly.

Intrauterine Insemination

Intrauterine insemination, also known as IUI, involves placing sperm directly inside a woman’s uterus. The goal is to increase the number of sperm that make it into the fallopian tubes, which in turn heightens the chances of fertilization.

This treatment is appropriate for people in a range of different circumstances. If the male in a relationship has a low sperm count or ejaculation issues, IUI may be the ideal treatment. It is also a useful treatment if a woman has physical issues, such as scar tissue, that can prevent sperm from entering the uterus. Your doctor can give you more insight into some of the physical issues that may hinder pregnancy and advise you on which treatments are best to address them.

The success rates for IUI vary between different types of patients. In general, the chances of becoming pregnant via IUI are around 20 percent during any given cycle.

In Vitro Fertilization

With IVF, a woman’s eggs are removed and then combined with sperm from her partner or from a donor. In some cases, donated eggs are also used.

This is a relatively expensive procedure, but it tends to have a higher success rate than other types of fertility treatments. According to Resolve, a national infertility association, ideal candidates for IVF have a 40 percent chance of giving live birth after treatment. Older patients — over 35 — tend to have lower success rates.

Keep in mind that some clinics have substantially higher IVF success rates than others. Take these numbers with a grain of salt, though. A high percentage could mean that the clinic performs only a small number of IVF procedures or that it is extremely picky about the patients it accepts.


There are several different types of surgery for women that may be able to aid in treating infertility, depending on what issues are causing the problem. The chances of conceiving after surgery depend on the specific procedure and on if there are any other issues that are contributing to the infertility.

Infertility is an emotionally taxing experience, but you shouldn’t let it plunge you into despair. With the proper treatment, you can greatly increase your chances of becoming a parent.