The news of pregnancy can bring a lot of happiness in a family. Having a positive pregnancy test in hand might seem like a dream come true for couples, especially for those who have been waiting for it, like for years. Nowadays a home based pregnancy test is becoming popular among couples to confirm about the pregnancy. Finding huge stock of pregnancy test kits in the cabinet of women who are planning their pregnancy should no sound odd. But are these tests reliable? Do they actually give the correct results? The answer to such questions is debatable. There are a lot of conditions like after how many days of conception the test was taken, and whether the test was performed properly or not. All such things effect the test, resulting into false positive results. So for all the couples who are ready to bring a little one in their life, here is a guide of what pregnancy test are like and how reliable they are.
Home Pregnancy Tests
The pregnancy tests are based on the amount of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) hormone released in the bloodstream of women. HCG is known as the pregnancy hormone and the various home pregnancy test which are available in the market actually test the pregnancy on the level of this hormone in urine. Let’s have a look at some points that you must know before you take home the pregnancy test kit.
- The home pregnancy test measures the amount of HCG and reports it in mIU per milliliter.
- The test gives best result when it is done first thing in the morning.
- Before you take the test, try to avoid drinking a lot of water as it would dilute the urine.
- Be calm and decrease your anxiousness as you take the test because you might screw up the whole thing in your excitement. And so make sure that you read the instructions carefully before taking the test.
- You must check the results after the recommended time limit. For that you can use a watch with a seconds hand to be accurate.
- To avoid being messy, use a container to collect the urine mid-stream which is asked by every home pregnancy tests.
Rule of Pregnancy Test Result
Some tests are more sensitive and proclaim to detect pregnancy before other tests. Such tests are expensive and report a positive result after they detect HCG more than 20mIU. While the other less sensitive tests return a positive result near 50mIU to 100mIU of HCG. The former test differ from the latter in giving a positive result just after eight days from conception. The general rule of a pregnancy test is that if you get a single line, it means that it is the control line and that you are not pregnant. But of your pregnancy test displays two pink lines then, congratulations because you are pregnant.
Congratulations! You are Pregnant
As soon as a woman becomes pregnant her body starts producing the pregnancy hormone, HCG. And with the development of pregnancy the level of the HCG hormone also goes on increasing in the bloodstream. When the same hormone is detected in the urine by the home pregnancy test, a positive test result is shown. These tests are actually designed to detect these hormones only. Also it should be noted that more the level of HCG in your system, easier it is for the test to give a positive result.
What if the Pregnancy Test Line is Very Faint?
A faint line in the pregnancy test is actually an indication of a positive pregnancy result. If you have used a home pregnancy test and got a faint test line, apart from the control line then there is a strong probability that you are pregnant. Sometimes women do get a faded test line, and the reason behind such instances is the low level of HCG in urine. It might happen that you have taken the test pretty early in your pregnancy. Some women often take the test as soon as they miss their first period and sometimes even before that. And so the women who attain a lower faded line are actually pregnant but it’s just that they are not far along in their pregnancy.
Evaporation Line: You are Not Pregnant!
Sometimes the faded lines are mistaken for the evaporation lines. It might happen that the faded line that appears to you as a positive pregnancy result is actually an evaporation line. The slight yet the most important difference between a faded positive line and an evaporation line is that the latter is visible in the test window few minutes after the recommended time. Each manufacturer has a certain time period in which it asks you to check the test window. Read the instructions properly and perform the test without any mistakes. So let’s understand the concept of a positive faded line and evaporation line in an easy manner.
Step 1: Take the test.
Step 2: Check the test window after the specified time period. If you observe a faint line, then you are most likely to be pregnant.
Step 3: But if you forget to check the test window within the recommended time period, and observe a faint line after like 10 minutes then it is an evaporation line for sure.
Most of the time an evaporation line is the cause of a false positive pregnancy test result. The future mothers are usually excited for the pregnancy test and its results and so they forget to check the test window within the given time period. And so the evaporation lines are mistaken as the faint positive line of pregnancy.
To be sure about the result,
- Retake the test shortly after the first test.
- Retake the test after waiting for two to three days.
- Make an appointment with your doctor.
Early Miscarriage: You Were Pregnant!
This condition is called Chemical Pregnancy or an early miscarriage in medical terms. Some women after getting a faint positive line, experience heavy period. Such condition is actually called early miscarriage while people think it as false positive. Unfortunately, that faint positive line in a pregnancy test reveal that you were actually pregnant when you took the test. A lot of women remain unaware to the fact that they are pregnant and thus about 25 to 40 percent of the pregnancies lead to undetected miscarriages.
Also it is possible that you get a positive pregnancy test result after your miscarriage. This happens due to the presence of the residual HCG hormone present in the system. This condition of chemical pregnancy usually happens within the trimester of pregnancy and often before that. A pregnancy that didn’t progress to its later stages is really heart wrenching for the parents but it is said that women who undergo early loss, do not face problems in conceiving later. Also they have healthier babies.
Why Does a False Pregnancy Test Happen?
- Some tests are not highly sensitive and cannot detect the early stages of pregnancy.
- Sometimes even when an early pregnancy is detected, the next test might show a negative result. This is sadly because of the undetected miscarriages.
- One more reason of getting a false positive test line is that the test wasn’t done correctly and an evaporation line was mistaken as a faint positive line.
- Pregnancy tests contain sensitive chemicals and thus on should always check the expiry date. Unused pregnancy kits might not be working correctly.
- It is also possible to get a false positive pregnancy result if you are on fertility treatment. These drugs artificially elevate the level of HCG in the body.
- A false positive result may also be caused due to some illness like islet cell tumors which result in an increase in the level of pregnancy hormone. But it’s important to understand that such conditions are very rare.
Pregnancy news is life changing for every couple. It not only brings a lot of happiness and adventure in the life of two people but also brings a lot of responsibilities. It demands attention, love and proper care of both mother and the newly born. And all of this in fact depends upon the correct pregnancy test results. Home pregnancy test kits are used by almost every other women. But there are a lot of medical conditions which can lead to false positive result and thus it is better not to make a stressful environment and get the news acknowledged as soon as possible by a qualified doctor.