How Do I Read My Pregnancy Blood Test Results

The Total Protein Test Measures How Much Of The Proteins Albumin And Globulin Are In Your Body

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Understanding your blood test results when it comes to protein

  • The normal range for total protein is between 6 and 8.3 .
  • High protein could mean inflammation or infections, such as viral hepatitis B or C, or HIV. It can also be an indicator of bone marrow disorders.
  • Low protein could indicate bleeding, liver disorder, kidney disorder, malnutrition, or inflammatory conditions.

Bet you didnt even think you could have higher or lower levels of protein. Now, you know what it means when you dont get enough or have too much.

Why Are Pregnancy Tests Wrong

Pregnancy tests detect the presence of a hormone called hCG and thus need a sufficient level of hCG. If a woman has hCG levels above 25 mIU/mL only then she is pregnant medically.

Some women might take longer to reach this concentration of hCG. If the pregnancy test is not timed accurately, then you will get false pregnancy blood test results.

When Should I Get A Pregnancy Test

A pregnancy test is most commonly done when a person is believed to be pregnant. Testing may detect a pregnancy as soon as 10 days after conception. The accuracy of pregnancy tests usually increases if taken at least 1-2 weeks after a missed menstrual period.

It may also be done when there are signs and symptoms that suggest an ectopic pregnancy or a pregnancy that is failing.

Signs of an ectopic pregnancy may include:

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Pain in the lower abdomen or pelvic area
  • Cramping on one side of the pelvis

Additional and more severe symptoms may develop if an ectopic pregnancy is not identified and treated, so it is important for females of childbearing age to talk with a doctor if they notice these symptoms.

Pregnancy testing may also be done as a routine test prior to some medical treatments, such as surgeries or chemotherapy, that could potentially harm a fetus.

For any specific patient, a doctor is in the best position to determine if a pregnancy test is appropriate.

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Who Blood Testing During Pregnancy Is For

Routine bloodwork during pregnancy is par for the course, meaning that virtually every mom-to-be will have blood tests at the start of her pregnancy and beyond.

Depending on your health and risk factors, your provider might recommend some additional blood tests to screen for possible complications or fetal abnormalities. Together, you can decide on the right amount of testing for you.

How Pregnancy Tests Work

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Pregnancy tests detect the levels of a hormone called hCG in your urine . This hormone is produced during pregnancy. It is present in your bloodstream and your urine.

In early pregnancy, the amount of the hormone in your system increases. The later you leave it to take a pregnancy test, the higher the hCG levels will be.

The earlier you take the test, the more likely you are to get a ‘false negative’ result. A ‘negative’ result is where the test shows up as negative even though you are actually pregnant.

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What Are The Different Types Of Pregnancy Blood Tests

There are two types of pregnancy blood tests: a qualitative blood serum test and a quantitative blood serum test. Both involve analyzing a small sample of your blood.

Qualitative Blood Serum Test:

  • This blood test confirms if the pregnancy hormone, hCG, is present. Much like a urine-based home pregnancy test, this test will give you a yes or a no result.
  • Even though these pregnancy blood tests are very accurate and sensitive, if a qualitative blood serum test is taken too early, you may still receive a false negative.

Quantitative Blood Serum Test:

  • Also known as the beta hCG test, this test measures the exact amount of hCG in your blood, making it the most accurate pregnancy blood test.

Are Test Results Accurate

While no test is 100% accurate, pregnancy tests are considered to be very accurate.

A positive result in someone who is not actually pregnant can occur after menopause or when taking hormone supplements. A negative result in someone who is actually pregnant can occur when a test is done too early after conception, when insufficient hCG levels are present. If a negative test occurs when a pregnancy is suspected, the test should be repeated a week later.

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White Blood Cell Count

Often the first CBC test shown is the white blood cell count. White blood cells, also called leukocytes, are a major component of your bodys immune system.

Your body produces more WBCs when you have an infection or allergic reaction. There are five major types of WBCs , but many blood test result reports list each of these at the bottom of the CBC results.

WBC count might also offer clues about your heart health. A 2018 study found that a high WBC count was a predictor of heart disease, and particularly stroke, especially among smokers. Lassale C, et al. . Elements of the complete blood count associated with cardiovascular disease incidence: Findings from the EPIC-NL cohort study. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-21661-x

What Is The Hcg Blood Test


The HCG blood test reveals exact levels in your bloodstream of HCG. Results typically can be seen about as soon as two to three days after implantation and double every two to three days. As your pregnancy progresses, levels will decrease and level off.

This test is performed to confirm pregnancy, estimate the age of the baby, diagnose any abnormalities like an ectopic pregnancy, reveal a potential miscarriage, and screen for Downs syndrome.

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Why Blood Work Results Matter

First, lets talk about why your blood work results are so important. Its helpful to think of your blood as both an oxygen delivery system and a waste removal mechanism.

Certain organs in your body, such as your liver, kidneys, spleen, and lungs, act as processing stations. Normal values on a lab report indicate healthy organ function and fully operational systems.

Its important to note that out-of-range test values arent necessarily a sign of imminent disease. Allen GM, et al. . Complete blood count for screening? Normal ranges are established by testing a large group of healthy people.

But those ranges can be influenced by a variety of factors for each person, including age, sex, weight, medical history, medicines, and lifestyle. Whats normal for you is best determined by your doctor.

For a routine checkup, a blood sample is usually examined with three main tests:

  • a complete blood count
  • a comprehensive metabolic panel
  • a lipid panel

These tests return a number of specific results. However, instead of grouping the results under each of the three tests, many reports simply present a single column of test results under Test Name.

To better understand your lab report, its helpful to recognize the relationship of the test results. Here are basic descriptions of the three major tests and the results that are most commonly listed under each.

When A Blood Test Is Used

In routine pregnancies with healthy women, at-home urine tests are more than sufficient and effective. Blood tests are primarily used in doctors’ offices, specifically, if there is a potential issue with the pregnancy or some other complicating factor , in which the greater sensitivity of the blood test is needed.

Blood tests may be ordered for higher risk pregnancies, during fertility treatments, when urine tests read negative but a period hasn’t come, to confirm or rule out a possible miscarriage or multiples, and to diagnose a potential ectopic or tubal pregnancy, as well as due to other pregnancy complications.

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Is The Hcg Blood Test Always Accurate

No test is 100 percent accurate every time.

The hCG test can give both false-negative results and false-positive results for pregnancy. Your doctor will help you figure out your results or perform follow-up testing if theres any doubt.

Certain medications, including those that contain hCG, can interfere with hCG blood test results. These include fertility drugs such as Profasi, Pregnyl, and Pergonal.

Smoking marijuana can also result in elevated hCG levels.

Test results can also be influenced by the presence of germ cell tumors. Germ cell tumors can be cancerous or benign, and theyre usually found in the reproductive organs. These tumors grow in the same cells as your eggs or sperm.

A high hCG level in absence of pregnancy could indicate that your doctor needs to do more testing to see if cancer is a factor.

What Are The Signs Of Pregnancy

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The signs of pregnancy vary from woman to woman. Usually the most obvious sign is the absence of menstruation . However, some women continue to have bleeding even while pregnant. The following are the most common first signs of pregnancy. However, each woman may experience the signs of pregnancy differently. These may include:

  • Extreme tiredness

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Frequent urination

  • Certain food cravings or aversions

  • Bloating of the belly

  • Darkening of the skin around the nipples .

These early signs may not positively indicate pregnancy, but may actually signal another process happening within the body. A pregnancy test can provide more accurate results.

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Why It Is Done

Lab tests are generally done for one of the following reasons:

  • To find the cause of symptoms
  • To confirm a diagnosis
  • To screen for a disease. Screening tests are often done for people of a specific age or those who have a high risk for a specific disease.
  • To help rule out a disease or condition
  • To assess the severity of a disease
  • To monitor the progression of a disease, how well an organ is working, or if treatment is helping
  • To verify specific events , or urine testing to look for drug use)

Many conditions can change your lab results. Your doctor will talk with you about any abnormal results as they relate to you.

Home Pregnancy Test Kits

Home pregnancy test kits are available from pharmacists. These kits offer accurate readings if performed strictly according to the manufacturers instructions. However, many women who use home pregnancy test kits get inaccurate results.The most common mistake is to test for pregnancy too soon after the missed period. The manufacturers instructions will tell you when is the best time to use the kit. It is very important to follow the manufacturers instructions exactly.

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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.

The Calcium Test Measures The Amount Of Calcium In Your Body That Is Not Stored In Your Bones

My Pregnancy Glucose Test Results
  • The normal range for calcium levels is 8.8-10.4 .
  • High calcium might be caused by long term bed rest after a broken bone, hyperparathyroidism, cancer, Pagets disease, and tuberculosis.
  • Low calcium might occur from a low level of the blood protein albumin, hypoparathyroidism, high levels of phosphate in the blood, rickets, and malnutrition from celiac disease, pancreatitis, and alcoholism.

Calcium isnt just about having strong bones, although that IS an important part!

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Laboratory Tests Results And Normal Values In Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a special time of a woman’s life that affects many different parts of the body. Most laboratory tests remain the same whether you are pregnant or not, while other laboratory tests that may be considered abnormal when not pregnant, can be considered normal during pregnancy. Below are the normal ranges for various lab tests whether you are pregnant or not.

Blood Tests And Scans In Pregnancy

As part of your antenatal care, you’ll be offered several blood tests and scans. Some are offered to everyone, while others are only offered if you might be at risk of a particular infection or condition.

All the tests are done to make your pregnancy safer or check that the baby is healthy, but you do not have to have them if you do not want to.

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Hcg Blood Levels By Week

If your doctor needs more information about your hCG levels, they may order a blood test. Low levels of hCG may be detected in your blood around 8 to 11 days after conception. hCG levels are highest towards the end of the first trimester, then gradually decline over the rest of your pregnancy.

The average levels of hCG in a pregnant womans blood are:

  • 3 weeks: 6 70 IU/L
  • 4 weeks: 10 – 750 IU/L
  • 5 weeks: 200 – 7,100 IU/L
  • 6 weeks: 160 – 32,000 IU/L
  • 7 weeks: 3,700 – 160,000 IU/L
  • 8 weeks: 32,000 – 150,000 IU/L
  • 9 weeks: 64,000 – 150,000 IU/L
  • 10 weeks: 47,000 – 190,000 IU/L
  • 12 weeks: 28,000 – 210,000 IU/L
  • 14 weeks: 14,000 – 63,000 IU/L
  • 15 weeks: 12,000 – 71,000 IU/L
  • 16 weeks: 9,000 – 56,000 IU/L
  • 16 – 29 weeks : 1,400 – 53,000 IUL
  • 29 – 41 weeks : 940 – 60,000 IU/L

The amount of hCG in your blood can give some information about your pregnancy and the health of your baby.

  • Higher than expected levels: you may have multiple pregnancies or an abnormal growth in the uterus
  • Your hCG levels are falling: you may be having a loss of pregnancy or risk of miscarriage
  • Levels that are rising more slowly than expected: you may have an ectopic pregnancy where the fertilised egg implants in the fallopian tube

Disadvantages Of Blood Pregnancy Tests

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Even though a blood pregnancy test can be performed earlier, it can take longer to receive your results compared to a urine test. Timing of results vary from lab to lab and can range from an hour to a few days.

Blood pregnancy tests must be performed in your doctor’s office, taking more time out of your schedule. Blood tests are more expensive than home pregnancy tests . Waiting a few extra days to do a home urine test is more convenient.

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Pregnancy Blood Test: Do I Need One

  • Most women do not need a blood test to confirm pregnancy
  • At-home pregnancy tests are very accurate when used properly
  • During your pregnancy, your doctor will draw blood to check for infections and other conditions that can affect your baby
  • New blood tests are being developed that can detect complications

If you suspect you may be pregnant, you might wonder if you need a pregnancy blood test. Do you really need to go to the doctor for a blood draw to confirm pregnancy?

Blood Vs Urine Pregnancy Testing

Another reason some people prefer a blood pregnancy test over a urine one is out of concern that the home test gave inaccurate results because it was not performed accurately. The home pregnancy test requires multiple steps, including urinating on the appropriate part of the strip or kit, waiting the right amount of time, and then assessing the results in comparison to a control. In early pregnancy, a urine hCG test kit that uses a colored line to demonstrate a positive might show a result that, for example, is faint and somewhat difficult to interpret. The blood test can take away some of this uncertainty, particularly given the importance of accurate test results.

At times, a women might need to get a blood pregnancy test is to have documentation of a positive or negative result. For example, if a woman is undergoing an elective surgery unrelated to pregnancy, she will often need to prove that she is not pregnant shortly before the procedure. As another example, a woman might need to show a pregnancy test result when applying for health or life insurance as part of the insurance application. Even though the urine hCG test might show the same results as the blood test, it would not be considered an acceptable lab test result in one of these situations.

  • A doctor’s lab order*
  • A PDF copy of your test results
  • Responsive customer service

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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.

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