Pregnancy tests

The pregnancy test is the most common and available method to confirm or deny pregnancy.

There are two types of pregnancy tests:

–         the pregnancy tests using urine samples: these tests, also referred as urine home pregnancy tests or dip tests, are commonly used because they may be easily purchased from the drugstores and used at home. Usually a first – morning sample is preferred because it is the most concentrated. The home pregnancy tests based on urine are around 98-99% accurate when done properly, following the instructions. The urine home pregnancy test shall be stored at the room temperature and shall not be opened before using it.

–         the pregnancy tests using blood samples imply a visit to the medical office or to a health clinic and the collection of a blood sample to be analyzed. The accuracy of these tests is over 99,9%, allowing thus a quick and reliable confirmation or denial of pregnancy.

Both pregnancy tests are based on checking and measurement of the HCG hormone (human chorionic gonadotropin), also called the pregnancy hormone, which is produced only during pregnancy. After the conception, the placenta produces this hormone which may be found in blood and urine. The presence of the HCG hormone is detected through a blood pregnancy test as early 11 days after conception, and through the urine pregnancy test, after 12 to 14 days following the conception.

Sometimes the results of the urine pregnancy tests are negative because they are taken too soon, before the term when the pregnancy may be detected. This situation is common especially in young women and adolescents where the ovulation occurs later.