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Home Pregnancy Test FAQs

How do I read the test result?
Be sure to read the instructions for your home pregnancy test carefully, as different tests display their results differently. Most of them have two windows, one that tells you if you've done the test correctly, and one that tells you if you are pregnant or not. Make sure you read the results when your test's instructions tell you to. If the test detects hCG, a positive sign will appear in the result window, which may be represented by a line, dot or symbol. Even if the line is faint, you should consider it a positive result. To confirm a questionable result, try taking another test a few days later when your hCG levels may have increased.

Which is more accurate, a urine test or a blood test?
Blood tests are slightly more sensitive than urine tests because they can detect very low levels of hCG. This means they can provide a more accurate result within about 7-12 days after conception. There are two types of blood tests doctors use to test for pregnancy. A quantitative blood test measures the exact amount of hCG in your blood, which makes it quite accurate. Qualitative hCG blood tests just check to see if the pregnancy hormone is present or not, giving you a simple yes or no. The qualitative hCG blood test is about as accurate as a urine test.

Are urine tests at the doctor's office any more sensitive than home tests? Doctors usually use the most sensitive pregnancy tests, able to read hCG levels as low as 15 to 25mIU/ml. They are basically the same as the most sensitive tests you can buy over-the-counter.

Is it possible to get a false positive result?
False positive test results are uncommon, but they do happen. Conditions which could lead to a false positive include letting the test sit for too long, or having had infertility treatments in which you may have received fertility drugs containing the hCG hormone. If you are not sure about your test results, you should try again after a couple of days. If you still have doubts about the test's accuracy, schedule an appointment with your doctor for a blood test.

If the result is negative, can I still be pregnant?
Yes. Home pregnancy tests are not 100 percent accurate. If you still think you might be pregnant even after a home pregnancy test gives you a negative result, you should see your doctor for a quantitative hCG test.

What if I took a test and the result was negative, but when I looked at it an hour or more later I saw a faint line?
You may be pregnant, but your level of hCG was too low for the test to detect it in the usual time frame. But a late-forming line does not necessarily mean you are pregnant. Sometimes evaporation lines can form if a home pregnancy test is left to sit for awhile. In either case, the best thing to do is take another test in a few days.

Can I use a home pregnancy test if I had an hCG injection (such as Profasi, Pregnyl or Novarel)?
You can, but you should wait 7 to 14 days to make sure the hormone is out of your system. Testing too soon could result in a false positive as a result of the hCG in your blood as a result of the injection.

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