Pregnancy test – 7 Important facts to know!

One of the most thrilling and exciting moments of any woman’s life would be waiting for the result of the pregnancy test. The pregnancy test is required to confirm if a woman is pregnant or not. The pregnancy test can be taken either at home or at the hospital.

Here are few facts that every woman should know before taking a pregnancy test.

1.How does pregnancy test work?

  • Pregnancy test works by finding the presence of a pregnancy hormone called Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG).
  • Every pregnant woman’s body starts to produce HCG hormones approximately 10 to 14 days after conception that is after a fertilized egg attaches to the wall of a woman’s uterus.
  • HCG will be present in both blood and urine.
  • The levels of hCG continue to rise rapidly and get doubled every 2 to 3 days.

2.When to check for pregnancy?

  • If your periods are regular you can check for a pregnancy test at home once you have skipped your period.
  • Early signs of pregnancy may urge you to check for a pregnancy test but still wait until you skip your period.

3.How to check for pregnancy at home?

how to check for pregnancy test
  • Home pregnancy test(HPT) strip is used to find if a woman is pregnant or not.
  • The home pregnancy test strip is available mostly in all medical shops and is mostly inexpensive.
  • Also one can get the HPT strip without a doctor’s prescription.
  • Home pregnancy test involves testing a woman’s urine.
  • Results may also be more accurate if you do the test with first-morning urine which contains the highest concentration of hCG.
  • The home pregnancy test is about 99% accurate if instructions are followed correctly.
  • The chemical present in the HPT shows you a result when it comes in contact with the HCG.

4.Results of home pregnancy test strips

Results may show up as,

  • a line – 2 lines indicate you are pregnant, 1 line indicates you are not pregnant.
  • a change in colour.
  • a symbol such as a “+” or “-” sign.
  • words which directly indicates “pregnant” or “not pregnant.
  • words ” which directly indicates YES” or “NO”.

Know more about the different types of Home pregnancy test kits available.

5.False positive and False negative result

False positive

false positive

False positive (type I error)means that you are not pregnant but the result shows positive.
According to Healthline false positive result may happen due to several reasons.
Few of the reasons are,

  • Chemical pregnancy

Early pregnancy miscarriage is a chemical pregnancy. You may still get positive result due to the traces of pregnancy hormone still in your blood and urine.

  • Miscarriage or abortion

fter miscarriage or abortion the pregnancy hormone traces will be there upto 6 weeks.

  • Few weeks after childbirth

Pregnancy hormone will be present up to 4 weeks after your delivery.

  • Ectopic pregnancy

Ectopic pregnancy is a condition in which the fertilized egg attaches outside the uterus which in turn gives you a positive result.

  • Fertility medication

If you are taking medications for treatment of childbirth your medicines may have the pregnancy hormone.

False Negative

false negative

False negative (type II error) means that you are pregnant but the result shows negative.
The reasons may be due to,

  • You checked for pregnancy too early before you skip your periods.
  • You have not followed the instructions properly.
  • Drinking lots of fluids before your pregnancy test may dilute your pregnancy hormone which in turn shows a negative result.

6.Blood Test

blood test
  • If you miss your period but still your pregnancy test shows negative wait for few more days and repeat again.
  • Still, you get a negative result then its time to visit your doctor.
  • Your doctor may advise you to take a blood test.

Blood tests are even more accurate than a home pregnancy test.

  • A qualitative hCG test -checks to see if hCG is present.
  • A quantitative hCG test (beta hCG) -measures the exact amount of hCG in your blood. It can find even very low levels of hCG.

7.Transvaginal ultrasound

transvaginal ultrasound

Transvaginal ultrasound may also be recommended in order to confirm your pregnancy.

Once you confirm that you are pregnant it is important to know about the,

Importance of Nutrition of during pregnancy and

Tips to follow during your pregnancy period.

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