Are Pregnancy Tests Always Right

Home Pregnancy Test Best Practices

Choose the right pregnancy test for you

It is important that a home test be performed properly to get the most accurate results. The instructions will differ slightly among various brands and types, but generally, you should follow these guidelines:

  • Use only test kits that have not yet expired. The chemicals in the kit can expire and will not be reliable.
  • Test kits must be stored properly prior to use. Exposure to direct sunlight and/or other degrading factors can cause the chemicals inside the test strip to be unstable and unreliable.
  • Carefully read the instructions that come with the test kit. Manufacturers may have slightly different methods of doing the test. These differences may include the reaction time. Most manufacturers recommend reading results that appear within 5 minutes of testing. Others may require longer. It is important to know this because results that appear after the reaction time are invalid.
  • Check to see what special preparations are required before a urine sample is obtained. For example, some test kits may be sensitive to certain food components or to changes in the body related to physical activity. Follow directions carefully to get the most accurate results.
  • Use a clock if the test kit requires specific timing. Guessing the time will only yield inaccurate results.

Is It Faster Or More Accurate To Go Straight To The Doctor To Get Tested

For most women, its actually faster to grab a test from a pharmacy or dollar store, says Schram. The first step with us is also a urine test, which tests hCG at the same concentrations as the test you use at home. Plus, most offices dont stock fancy early detection tests, so ours may actually miss very early pregnancies that you could pick up at home. When medically indicated, we can also order serum pregnancy tests, but these can take up to 24 hours to come back.

Dont Solely Rely On Pregnancy Tests

Pregnancy tests are typically accurate at signaling a pregnancy. However, you shouldnât rely on those results alone. An ultrasound will confirm the pregnancy and check the early health of the embryo to see if the pregnancy is viableâthis assurance is important for women who are experiencing pain or bleeding during pregnancy and those who have had previous miscarriages or ectopic pregnancies.

Visit today to schedule a free pregnancy test or ultrasound to confirm your pregnancy. Our clinic staff is available to help you tackle these early days of pregnancy and give you the support, medical care, and the guidance you need.

Davina is a native of Grenada and a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin. She’s a content specialist with a passion for empowering women to thrive and reach their full potential. In her free time, Davina is probably painting, reading, or baking something unnecessarily sweet.

Also Check: How Long After Taking Mirena Out Can I Get Pregnant

False Positive Pregnancy Test

You may have what is called a false positive pregnancy test, in which the test has indicated that hCG is showing up in your urine, but this indication is for some other reason than that you are pregnant.

HCG, which is generally known as the pregnancy hormone, is usually a sign of the development of the egg in a womans ovary, and that the placenta is also developing which will protect the fertilized egg.

Causes of a False Positive Pregnancy Test

A false pregnancy test could be a sign of other things, includes:

  • A medical condition or illness which has resulted in hCG or blood or protein in the urine. This can include kidney disease and bladder infections, as well as ovarian cysts, menopause or some very rare tumors.
  • Certain injections for fertility can be for hCG and may cause it to show up in your wee. Be aware that other fertility therapies should not affect your results.
  • This can also be caused by several medications such as Phenothiazine, tranquilizers, anti-convulsants, anti-Parkinsons medications, diuretics, Promethazine, and hypnotics.
  • If you were recently pregnant or miscarried, the hCG may still show up in your body.
  • The test may be faulty in some way.

What Would Make a Pregnancy Test Wrong?

You may be looking at the test after the recommended wait time detailed on the packaging. If the second line showed up much later than the wait time, you might not be pregnant. The second line is just an evaporation line from your urine on the strip.

Can You Get A Positive Pregnancy Test And Not Be Pregnant

Right Time Prank Joke Pregnancy Test/Always Turns Positive ...

Although false negatives are far more common than false positives, it is possible to receive a positive pregnant test result and not be pregnant. However, a false positive is usually not a random result often an underlying condition causes incorrect results. False positives can be caused by:

  • Certain medications: If you are taking fertility medications, you may see a false positive. . Other medications that affect results include HCG , medication for Parkinsons disease, some anxiety medications, certain diuretics, and promethazine.
  • Certain conditions including UTI and cysts. In the case of a UTI, blood and protein may enter your urine, which can cause the test results to be erroneous.
  • Recent miscarriage: The test may be picking of HCG from the former pregnancy. Even if you miscarry, HCG does not return to zero immediatelyit takes time for HCG to leave the body. For this reason, many doctors do not recommend trying to conceive after a miscarriage until you have confirmed HCG levels of zero. This makes it much easier to date the following pregnancy, as well as eliminate confusion as to whether the HCG is from the previous pregnancy or a new pregnancy.

You May Like: How Do You Prevent Stretch Marks During Pregnancy

What Are The Chances Of A False Positive Pregnancy Test

Truly false positive pregnancy tests are rare. The risk of a false negative pregnancy test is much higher than the risk of a false positive. Below are some possible explanations for false positive pregnancy tests :

  • Evap or indent line. Waiting longer to read the results than specified in the test instructions can lead to what appears to be a positive pregnancy test, but is actually a result of ink pooling in the body of the test.
  • LH peak. LH and hCG are biochemically very similar, so the presence of one will test positive for the other. For example, if you are taking ovulation tests and you are pregnant, the LH will be read as hCG .Sometimes, the hormone hCG can be released from the pituitary at the time of your LH peak. If you take a pregnancy test during this time, theres a small chance of a false positive.
  • Chemical pregnancy. A high proportion of early pregnancies are miscarried even before the day of your period. Taking a test too early could detect a very early pregnancy that is not viable. Technically, this is not a false positive, because you really were pregnant.
  • Perimenopause. Perimenopausal women have somewhat elevated levels of circulating hCG, even when theyre not pregnant. This could lead to a false positive result.
  • Infertility treatment. Women undergoing hCG treatment to stimulate ovulation may also receive false positive results if they test within 10 days of their last injection.
  • Testing When You Feel Pregnant

    You may decide to take a pregnancy test because youre having early pregnancy symptoms, including:

    • Breast tenderness
    • Mood swings
    • Slight morning nausea

    Depending on whether a positive pregnancy test would be good or bad news, symptoms like these may fill you with dread or excitement. But heres the good news: pregnancy symptoms dont mean youre pregnant. In fact, you can feel pregnant and not be pregnant, or not feel pregnant and be expecting.

    The same hormones that cause pregnancy symptoms are present every month between ovulation and your period.

    Many symptoms similar to pregnancy symptoms can be caused by other things, like a cold, the flu, or even a few nights of poor sleep.

    Read Also: Can I Drink Breakfast Essentials While Pregnant

    How Soon Can You Take A Pregnancy Test

    At-home pregnancy tests are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration , meaning their accuracy and labeling is evaluated before they reach store shelves. When it comes to the accuracy of at-home pregnancy tests, research shows if the test is used as directed, an inaccurate result is rare. While false-positive pregnancy test results are uncommon, if you do receive an inaccurate result, its more likely to be a false-negative. In this case, its likely youre testing too early, before HCG can be detected.

    For most women who have a regular menstrual cycle, a pregnancy test could be taken on the expected day of the period, says Dr. Merhi. The earliest would be the expected day of the period however, I usually tell patients to wait at least a few days after the expected day of the period in order to lower the chances of having a false result.

    Its worth noting that at-home pregnancy tests accuracy claimsmany of which advertise an accuracy rate of 99% from the day of the expected periodare based on data used in a sterile laboratory testing environment. If you think you received an inaccurate result, you can either wait and test again a few days later or see your doctor for a blood test, which can detect HCG earlier than at-home tests and has an accuracy rate of 99%.

    Pregnancy Tests And Accuracy

    Pregnancy tests with line progression! Positive test after having period?!

    A positive pregnancy test is almost always correct. Some negative tests may not be correct if you tested too early.

    This is called a ‘false negative’ result. The result will present as negative, but you are actually pregnant.

    This happens for a few of reasons, because:

    • you did the test too early
    • you didn’t wait long enough before checking the result
    • your urine is very diluted because you have been drinking a lot of water
    • there is a fault with the test

    If the result of the test is negative, and you think you might still be pregnant, repeat the test a few days later. If symptoms persist after a few negative tests, make an appointment with your GP.

    Read Also: How To Find Pregnancy Week

    What Can Cause A False Positive Pregnancy Test

    Here are the most likely reasons you may end up with a false positive pregnancy test:

    If you take a standard pregnancy test with line indicators, it’s important to check the results according to the specific instruction of the test. If you let it sit too long before reading the results, urine on the test can evaporate and make it look like you have two lines instead of just one. “Oftentimes people will see evaporation lines as urine starts to evaporate off the test,”Jamil Abdur-Rahman, M.D., board-certified ob-gyn, tells SELF. That might cause the test to look like it has a faint second linemaking it positivebut it really only has one.

    The best way to avoid this: Read the pregnancy test’s directions and follow them exactly. The popular pregnancy test brand First Response, for example, instructs users to wait three minutes after taking the test, then read it as soon as possible4.

    The second most common reason Dr. Abdur-Rahman’s patients get false positives is because the test is expired, he says. When a test is past its expiration date, the chemical that detects hCG doesn’t always work as it should, and youre more likely to get a misread. “The test can expire and the chance of having a false positive increases,” Dr. Abdur-Rahman says.

    If you take a pregnancy test too soon after taking a fertility drug that contains hCGlike some injections that are often part of in vitro fertilizationyou could get a false positive.

  • Severe pain in your abdomen or pelvis while pregnant
  • Home Pregnancy Test Accuracy

    • Medical Author: Omnia M Samra, MD
    • Medical Editor: Bryan D Cowan, MD
    • Medical Editor: Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD
    • Medical Editor: Lee P Shulman, MD

    If you think you are pregnant, you may want to test yourself at home with a home pregnancy test. You can buy test kits at a drug store without a prescription. Home use kits measure a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin in your urine. However, these tests are qualitative, and the results are either positive or negative for pregnancy.

    The most sensitive test of pregnancy is best performed by a laboratory using a sample of your blood. These tests not only detect human chorionic gonadotropin but also can indicate the amount of the hormone, which doubles every 2-3 days during the first several weeks of pregnancy. These more sensitive tests can tell you approximately how long you have been pregnant and even detect specific problems with the pregnancy. Your doctor can perform this test.

    Initially, many women prefer the privacy, convenience, and quick results from home test kits. Home pregnancy tests are not as accurate as blood tests done by your doctor. They also cannot determine if your pregnancy is developing as expected. The hormone hCG may be detected in urine about 2 weeks after conception . With the home test kit, you place a drop of your urine on a prepared chemical strip. It usually takes 1 or 2 minutes for the strip to indicate the result.

    Don’t Miss: How To Get Rid Of Sciatica Pain While Pregnant

    Modern Fertility Is Always Here With A Heads

    Whether a pregnancy is a complete surprise or not, knowing what to do and what may happen after a positive pregnancy test is important. If you’re currently pregnant and want a more in-depth guide for what to expect after that positive result, we’ve got you covered right here.

    If you’re currently pregnant, trying to get pregnant, or planning for kids in the future, the Modern Fertility Prenatal Multivitamin has 12 key nutrients to support your body at every stage even through lactation . The Prenatal Multi is easy on the tummy, vegetarian, and comes with a beautifully blue reusable glass jar.

    And if you need to test for pregnancy, the Modern Fertility Pregnancy Test will get you results you can trust at an affordable cost. You can start testing as early as six days before your missed period. Plus, download our free app for a countdown to the best testing times each cycle.

    Wherever you’re at on your reproductive journey right now, the free online Modern Community is here for you with real-talk support. Poke around and get in on the conversations by joining today.

    This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Eva Marie Luo, MD, MBA, OB-GYN at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Clinical Lead for Value at the Center for Healthcare Delivery Science at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

    Blood Test Result Timetable

    Right Time Prank Joke Pregnancy Test/Always Turns Positive ...

    Blood tests are able to detect a smaller amount of hCG and they can detect it slightly earlier than standard at-home pregnancy tests, usually nine to 12 days after conception. Blood test results are usually available the same day or within a day.

    Blood tests aren’t often done to detect pregnancy because they are expensive and at-home urine tests are quite accurate and sensitive. However, people who are undergoing fertility treatments may have blood tests as part of their care.

    Recommended Reading: Can I Get Pregnant If I Have Irregular Periods

    Pregnancy Tests Urine And Blood

    There are two types of pregnancy tests one uses a urine sample, the other a sample of blood. Both pregnancy tests detect the presence of a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin . This hormone is produced by the placenta shortly after the embryo attaches to the uterine lining and builds up rapidly in your body in the first few days of pregnancy. It is this rapid shift in hormones that trigger most of your pregnancy symptoms.

    Home Pregnancy Tests Can Be 99% Accurate

    There are two basic types of home pregnancy tests. Both test for the presence of the pregnancy hormone hCG . The difference is that one uses a test strip or dipstick that you hold in the urine stream and the other uses a urine collection cup with a test device.

    When you take either of these tests in a lab setting, like at your doctor’s office, both are close to 99% accurate. But when you perform them at home, the accuracy drops because people fail to follow instructions or they take the test too soon, according to , MD, FACOG, an OB-GYN and medical director at the Maven Clinic.

    Even when the instructions are followed correctly, interpreting the results can be tricky. One way to overcome any confusion is to use a digital test in which the results are displayed as “pregnant” or “not pregnant.” Though these tests can be more expensive often costing $8 per test compared to $3 for your standard dipstick or cup test, depending on the brand.

    Another important caveat is whether the test is expired. Many people don’t realize that pregnancy tests can expire, so check the expiration date before using it. The chemical that detects hCG levels won’t work as well after the expiration date, making it less accurate and more likely to give you a false-negative result.

    Also Check: How To Get Sim Pregnant

    How To Use A Home Pregnancy Test Kit

    Home pregnancy test kits vary in their sensitivity to hCG. Most test kits are best used about one to two weeks after your period was due. Always strictly follow the manufacturers instructions. Generally speaking, most home pregnancy tests follow the same basic principles:

    • You collect urine in a small container and dip the test strip into the urine. Alternatively, some kits offer a test strip that you hold under your stream of urine.
    • To improve accuracy of results, it is best to test your urine when you first get out of bed. Early morning urine is concentrated and contains higher levels of hCG than at other times of the day.
    • Most test strips indicate the presence of hCG by the appearance of a coloured line or dot.
    • Results are rapid. Most test kits take only a few minutes to complete.
    • Most kits come with a second test strip. This allows you to test again at a later stage.

    Related Posts

    Recent Stories