To know what causes a false pregnancy test result can help you gain a deeper understanding of your case. After all, this way you can avoid a false alarm and even emotional issues involved with a result that will later be ruled out.
That’s why the suggestion is that the woman always have a blood test, regardless of the result of the pharmacy test. Not that this second is unreliable, just to avoid the 1% chance of being a false result.
With that in mind, follow our content and access more information on this important topic.
What causes a false pregnancy test result?
It is not just one factor that causes a false pregnancy test result. In reality, it will all depend on a number of factors and circumstances. Therefore, it is essential that women pay attention to their body and their own routine, in order to ensure that the result is more assertive.
Throughout this text, we will present the factors that can cause a false negative, and what circumstances can cause the pharmacy test to give a false positive.
What can cause a false negative result?
First of all, let’s pay attention to the possible causes of a false negative test. Look:
1- Early tests can lead to false negative
One of the reasons pharmacy tests can give a false negative is when a woman gets tested too early. That is, the day after conception.
After all, the body has not had enough time to start preparing for pregnancy and, therefore, it is not possible to measure the amount of hGC in the woman’s body. This is exactly why it is interesting to wait a few days to take the test and even retake it after a week or two after the first test.
2- Irregular menstrual cycles can also cause a false pregnancy test result
If the woman has a very irregular menstrual cycle, it is possible that the pregnancy test does not give a reliable result either. In this case, it is suggested that the test be done two to three weeks after the last supposed period. This way it will be possible to have a slightly more accurate result.
3- The expiration date may be what causes a false pregnancy test result
To avoid false negatives, remember to look at the expiration date of the test you are taking. The test can often be expired, causing the reagent to not act when it comes into contact with urine. And so, the false negative can be introduced. So be aware of this.
4- Test before the expected start date of menstruation
If you took your test shortly before your expected start date, your hGC levels are likely to be very low. As a result, the test reagent may have some difficulty in detecting the presence of the hormone in the woman’s urine and, because of this, it has a false negative.
See also: Online pregnancy test: Why are women choosing to take it?
The false positive is extremely rare, but what can cause it?
Although the false negative happens under different circumstances, the false positive can also be a reality. However, this type of result is extremely rare, which is why it is said that pharmacy tests are 99% effective.
Anyway, the day and the way the test is done can affect the result. Here are some causes of the false positive:
1- Presence of hGC in the body for a reason other than pregnancy
Some fertility treatments may involve administering hGC to the woman’s body. Therefore, the false positive can be triggered by this type of intervention that causes the hormone to be produced, even before the woman becomes really pregnant.
2- Recent Pregnancies May Be What Causes False Pregnancy Test Results
If you were recently pregnant, it is possible that your hGC levels are still too high. So be sure to take the test again after a while to ensure that the result is negative or positive.
It is worth remembering that recent pregnancy can cause false positives in cases where:
- The birth took place a short time ago;
- There was a miscarriage;
- The pregnancy suffered some kind of interruption.
3- Some types of ovarian cysts can also affect the test result
In some cases, a woman may suffer from some types of rare ovarian cysts, which are the cause of the false positive. Anyway, it is essential that you consult your doctor to find out more about your condition.
Chemical, ectopic and molar pregnancies can cause confusion in the results, be aware
Other types of circumstances can lead to a false or confusing pregnancy test result. Among them, we can highlight:
- Chemical pregnancy: It occurs when a woman becomes pregnant, but the loss is very early. Thus, the body produces the hGC, although an ultrasound cannot detect the fetus. If you suspect a chemical pregnancy, talk to your doctor.
- Ectopic pregnancy: Although not a false positive, this type of pregnancy can cause confusion in the results. This type of pregnancy happens when the fertilized egg implants itself outside the uterus. This type of pregnancy carries a high risk and requires medical intervention as soon as possible.
- Molar pregnancy: This is not a false positive either, but there is no baby in the making. In molar pregnancy, the mother’s genetic material is lost during fertilization, and as a result a cluster of abnormal cells is produced without any coherence. Again, seeking medical help is essential.
Seek medical help if you have any questions
Regardless of whether you have a positive or negative result, if you are in doubt, seek medical help. Remember that it is much more valuable to prevent the situation than to cure it.
Some cases such as molar and ectopic pregnancy require immediate medical attention. So don’t leave it for later. Take care and keep your health up to date.
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