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Pregnancy test accuracy

Finding out you’re pregnant is a life changing event, which means the last thing you want is a false negative or a false positive, because no one’s emotions can handle that kind of a roller coaster. Am I pregnant

The accuracy of a pregnancy test depends on 4 main things:

  • How well you follow the instructions provided with the pregnancy test.
  • When you were ovulating and how long it has taken your fertilized egg to implant into your uterine wall.
  • How long you have been pregnant for.
  • The quality and sensitivity of the pregnancy test you are using.

To increase the accuracy of your pregnancy test you can:

  • Be patient and wait a full week after your missed period before you take the test or a false negative is very possible.
  • Take the test first thing in the morning or at least 4 hours after you have last been to the bathroom.
  • Opt for a blood pregnancy test instead of a home pregnancy test.

Currently, there are several home pregnancy tests available that are more sensitive and can be used before you even miss your period. They are particularly useful for couples who are having difficulty conceiving, however there is an increased chance for the test to give a false negative, so it’s always a good idea to take another home pregnancy test if you do miss your period.

You may be worried that certain medications you are taking may affect your pregnancy test results. Well, some fertility medications do contain hCG, the pregnancy hormone, but your doctor will let you know and give you more patient specific advice. Antibiotics, birth control pills and allergy medicines should have no impact whatsoever, however some antihistamines and diuretics have been known to give a false negative reading. The best thing to do is to read the information sheet provided with your medications and/or speak with your healthcare provider.

Reasons for a false negative reading

Reasons for a false positive reading

Tips for taking a home pregnancy test

 

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