It’s an exciting moment for any woman to view the result of their pregnancy test. So, to help you make sure that yours is as accurate as it can be, we’ve put together some useful tips.
Does the hCG sensitivity of the pregnancy test matter?
The sensitivity of a pregnancy test determines how soon after conception pregnancy can be detected by the test. Concentrations of hCG (human Chorionic Gonadotropin) are reported in milli International Units per ml or mIU/ml. Pregnancy tests with a sensitivity of 20 mIU/ml are more sensitive than tests with a sensitivity of 50 or 100 mIU/ml.
High sensitivity, 20 mIU/ml tests, such as the U-Test Pregnancy, equates to early detection of pregnancy. This means that you can begin testing accurately as early as eight days after conception or 2-3 days before expected menstruation. The date of intercourse should not be viewed as the day of conception. Conception can take place several days after the date of intercourse.
Why you should use first morning urine or hold urination?
Urine pregnancy tests detect hCG (human Chorionic Gonadotropin) and therefore it is best to use urine samples containing the highest amount of the hCG hormone:
- Diluted urine samples (from drinking high volumes of water or frequent urination) will reduce the level of hCG and influence the test accuracy.
- First morning urine is considered the ideal sample as it contains the highest concentration of hCG, given that you have not urinated frequently throughout the night.
If a pregnancy test is done later in the day, make sure that you do not urinate 3 to 4 hours before testing.
When should I take a home pregnancy test?
The product brand selected will indicate the test sensitivity. If it is a 20 mIU/ml test such as U-Test Pregnancy you can begin testing accurately as early as eight days after conception or 2-3 days before expected menstruation.
Conception may take place several days after date of intercourse. The date of intercourse should not be viewed as the day of conception (fertilization).
You improve your odds of getting an accurate result if you wait until after the first day of your missed period. Why? During early pregnancy the hCG concentration is very low. The earlier you take the urine pregnancy test the lower are the hCG levels to detect. Also keep in mind that the timing of your ovulation might vary from month to month and the fertilized egg can implant in the uterus at different times. This can affect the timing of the hCG production and when it can be detected. If your periods are irregular you might miscalculate when your period is due.
What is a biochemical pregnancy and why can it result in a false positive pregnancy test result?
Research indicates that 50 – 60% of all conceptions (fertilized eggs) do not develop into a normal pregnancy. This is termed biochemical pregnancy.
A biochemical pregnancy occurs when the fertilized egg attaches to the uterine lining after conception and starts producing hCG, but later the egg is discarded by the body. The term describes a very early miscarriage or pregnancy loss. The menstrual cycle usually begins on time or a few days late.
A biochemical pregnancy can result in a false pregnancy test result if you tested early for pregnancy.
For more information read What is a pregnancy test and how does it work and Pregnant or not.