Some women approach the prospect of pregnancy with excitement, others with worry. No matter how you feel about the idea of being pregnant, a pregnancy test may let you know, one way or the other, if you are pregnant.
If you have symptoms of pregnancy such as these, pregnancy testing can confirm your suspicions:
- Missed period
- Breast tenderness
To learn more about pregnancy symptoms you can visit our Pregnancy Information section. First Resort can help you determine if you are experiencing a pregnancy by administering a free pregnancy test (that is over 99% accurate and performed by a nurse), prior to expecting your period. You do not have to wait until you miss a period if you suspect you are pregnant.
To take a free test at one of our clinics, please call us at the health clinic location nearest you and come for a free test. Trained counselors and nurses will answer your questions and address concerns you might have confidentially.
What is a pregnancy test and how does it work?
Pregnancy tests are designed to tell if your urine or blood contains a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). This hormone is produced right after a fertilized egg attaches to the uterus. This usually happens — but not always — about six days after fertilization. If you’re pregnant, levels of hCG continue to increase rapidly, doubling every two to three days.
You can also go to our Ask The Doctor section to get answers to other questions related to pregnancy. If you would like to speak to one of our counselors about your pregnancy related questions, please call our clinic and make an appointment. Get your questions answered by one of our staff members. We care about you and your health.
What types of pregnancy tests exist in the market?
Two main types of pregnancy tests can let you know if you’re pregnant: urine tests and blood tests.
Urine tests can be done at home or in a doctor’s office. Many women first choose a home pregnancy test (HPT), about a week after a missed period. Home pregnancy tests are private and convenient. These products come with instructions. Follow them closely for the most accurate results. After testing, you can confirm results by seeing your doctor, who can perform even more sensitive pregnancy tests.
Blood tests are done at your doctor’s office, but are used less often than urine tests. These tests can detect pregnancy earlier than a home pregnancy test, or about six to eight days after ovulation. But with these tests, it takes longer to get the results than with a home pregnancy test.
Two types of blood pregnancy tests are:
A qualitative hCG test simply checks to see if hCG is present. It gives a “yes” or “no” answer to the question, “Are you pregnant?” Doctors often order these tests to confirm pregnancy as early as 10 days after a missed period. However, some of these tests can detect hCG much earlier.
A quantitative hCG test (beta hCG) measures the exact amount of hCG in your blood. It can find even very low levels of hCG. Because these pregnancy tests can measure the concentration of hCG, they may be helpful in tracking any problems during pregnancy. They may also be used to rule out a tubal (ectopic) pregnancy or to monitor a woman after a miscarriage when hCG levels fall rapidly.
What home pregnancy tests exist?
There are two basic types of home pregnancy tests.
- The most common types of home pregnancy tests use a test strip or dipstick that you hold in the urine stream or dip into a sample of urine. An area on the end of the dipstick or test strip changes color if hCG is present, meaning you are pregnant.
- A second type uses a urine collection cup with a test device. To use this type of test, you may place several drops of urine into a well in the test device or you put the test device into urine collected in a cup. An area of the device changes color if hCG is present, meaning you are pregnant.
The accuracy of home pregnancy tests are different for every woman because:
- The days of a woman’s menstrual cycle and ovulation can change each month.
- The exact day of implantation of the fertilized egg is not always known.
- Each home pregnancy test kit has a different sensitivity to find hCG. If the level is very low, the first urine of the morning is the most likely to show a positive result.
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