How Do Pregnancy Tests Work?

Pregnancy tests work by detecting and measuring the amount of hCG in your body. hCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin, is a hormone that usually is only produced during pregnancy, so if hCG is detected in your blood or urine, it’s a good sign that you are pregnant.

Both blood and urine pregnancy tests are designed to demonstrate the presence of hCG and are fairly accurate when taken correctly and at the appropriate time.

When Should I Take a Pregnancy Test?

For the most accurate results, you should wait until at least one week after your missed period to take a test. Many women panic if they forgot to take their birth control or the condom broke and try to take a test right away. However, this will likely result in a false negative. Instead, it’s better to wait so the results are more accurate.

It’s also recommended that you take the test first thing in the morning before drinking any water so your urine isn’t diluted.

What If My Pregnancy Test Comes Back Positive?

If your test is positive and you weren’t planning to be pregnant right now, don’t panic! You’ll need to gather more information about your pregnancy through an ultrasound to really understand what’s going on and what your options are.

An ultrasound answers three important questions:

  • How far along am I?
  • Where is the pregnancy located/is it ectopic?
  • Is the pregnancy viable?

It’s important to know how far along you are, even if you’re considering abortion. Different procedures happen at different stages of pregnancy, and the abortion pill is only available for very early pregnancies.

Ectopic pregnancies are non-viable and life-threatening to women, so an appointment with a physician is essential.

Ultrasound can provide all of that vital information. We offer ultrasounds for free, so if your pregnancy test came back positive, contact us to schedule an appointment today!