A pregnancy test is the quickest and easiest procedure to determine early pregnancy, even before a delay.
To date, there are many types of pregnancy tests with varying degrees of sensitivity. This article will answer questions about what kind of pregnancy tests there are, what is their accuracy and reliability, which pregnancy test is better to choose and what is the probability of an error.
Online pregnancy test
Pregnancy cannot be diagnosed based on nonspecific symptoms and dubious symptoms occurring in the early stages (nausea, chest engorgement and
An online pregnancy test is nothing more than fortune telling with a simple set of questions. The basis of such online tests are taken the first signs of pregnancy, and the results of the pregnancy test are very indicative. And the absence or presence of any signs can not say about the presence of pregnancy, or about its absence. To determine the exact presence of pregnancy is widely used pregnancy test.
If you have suspicions or doubts, do not waste your time answering the questions of the online pregnancy test, because when there is a question about a possible pregnancy, regardless of what result a woman expects, positive or negative, she only hopes for a reliable answer.
How to determine pregnancy?
By the end of the first week after conception (approximately the third week of the menstrual cycle), when the embryo is implanted in the uterine mucosa, the developing placenta begins to produce human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). It is on the detection of the hormone hCG that all pregnancy tests work, and the identification of this hormone makes it likely that pregnancy will occur.
Currently, there are many ways to determine hCG, but for the definition of pregnancy, preference is given to the definition of hCG in:
- of blood (analysis performed in the laboratory);
- urine (analysis is performed at home).
The very principle of determining the hormone is absolutely no different.
What pregnancy test to choose?
Currently, there are test systems for the rapid determination of the presence or absence of pregnancy, which can be used by women at home. Almost all pregnancy tests that are commercially available – from the simplest to the “sophisticated” – are diagnosed with the same degree of accuracy. Nevertheless, according to the degree of sensitivity, pregnancy tests are divided into those that are able to recognize hCG in a woman’s urine at a level of 10 to 25 mIU / ml. The higher the number of mIU / ml per package, the less sensitive the test.. So for the early diagnosis of pregnancy it is necessary to buy a pregnancy test with a sensitivity of 10 mIU / ml in a pharmacy. Such a test is able to detect pregnancy hormone as early as 10 days after ovulation, that is, even before the expected menstruation.
There are several types of domestic and import tests for determining pregnancy:
- test strips (strip tests) – the most simple paper strips with markup;
- tablet test – consists of a plastic tablet with two windows and a disposable pipette;
- jet test – test cartridges can be substituted directly under the urine stream;
- electronic or digital test – tests of the new generation.
Pregnancy test strips
These are the simplest, and therefore the cheapest pregnancy tests. Test strips represent the strip impregnated with reagent. The principle of operation of such tests is simple – you need to immerse the test strip vertically in a container with urine to the marked line for 5-10 seconds, then put it on a horizontal surface and after 3-5 minutes evaluate the result. One strip – there is no pregnancy, two stripes – there is a pregnancy.
The sensitivity of pregnancy tests of this type most often is 25 mMe / ml.
pros: can be purchased at any pharmacy, low cost, you can diagnose pregnancy from 1 day delay.
Minuses: it is necessary to collect urine into a separate clean container; in early pregnancy, the test is carried out in the morning (as the concentration in the morning urine is maximum), the possible unreliability of the results due to a violation of the testing methodology (for example, the test strip was immersed above the indicated mark or insufficient amount fell urine and the strip is not soaked).
Tablet (Cassette) Pregnancy Test
Test strip in a plastic tablet. On the case there are two windows. It is necessary to remove the cassette from the package and place it on a horizontal surface, in a round hole with a disposable pipette, included in the package, put a few drops of urine, which comes into contact with the reagent present there, and in the second window (rectangular) the result will appear after 3- 5 minutes. The result can be in the form of one or two parallel strips, as on a normal test strip.
The sensitivity of pregnancy tests of this type most often is 20-25 mMe / ml.
pros: relatively inexpensive, it is possible to diagnose pregnancy from day 1 of delay, more accurate than a test strip, because its design eliminates the error during the diagnosis. If you want to save the result to memory, then the tablet type is best suited.
Minuses: The quality and sensitivity of the reagent is not very different from the usual paper test strips; to collect urine in a pipette, you must first collect it in a container, which must also be clean.
Inkjet pregnancy test
Inkjet pregnancy test is a cassette with a holder and a cap. The device of inkjet test cassettes is more complex. The jet test contains a special layer of microscopic particles that firmly join the hCG hormone, provided it is present in the woman’s urine (that is, in the presence of pregnancy). This test is very sensitive, even with a minimum content of chorionic gonadotropin, practically does not give an error and can be used for several days before the delay of menstruation.
The sensitivity of pregnancy tests of this type most often is from 10 to 25 mME / ml.
pros: convenient and comfortable to handle – no need to look for a clean jar, just enough to substitute the receiving end of the test under a stream of urine and see the result in a few minutes. Provides hygiene diagnostics and accurate results, as its design eliminates the error during diagnosis.
Minuses: The price is significantly higher than other pregnancy tests.
Digital pregnancy test
The digital test works on the same principle as all the above test strips, tablet or inkjet tests. It also responds to the presence of a pregnancy hormone in a woman’s urine. And some digital tests with their intelligent dual sensors not only can indicate the presence of pregnancy, but also determine the period in weeks from the moment of conception.
For the test, you must remove the cap to activate the battery, hold the strip under the urine for 5 seconds, or lower it into the urine for 20 seconds. An hourglass appears on the screen, indicating that the test is usable and starts the test. Then the test will show "a plus" or "minus". There are also options in the form of appearing words: “pregnant” – “pregnant” or “not pregnant” – “not pregnant”. If you are pregnant, then the exact date will appear soon after the plus sign.
One of the popular digital tests is the Clearblue DIGITAL pregnancy test with the conception indicator. The manufacturer claims that the digital test is so sensitive that it can be used 4 days before the date of the expected onset of menstruation (approximately from the 10th day of the intended ovulation (DPO)). However, the sensitivity of this test is 25 mMe / ml, like most conventional test strips for a much lower cost.
pros: convenient and comfortable to use, a clear image on the screen (no need to fantasize about whether there is a second bar or not), determines the number of weeks from the moment of conception.
Minuses: the price is significantly higher than other pregnancy tests, not all pharmacies sell, the result will remain on the screen for about 24 hours, so it is not suitable for those who want to leave the memory test result, the test can be used only once, it does not high sensitivity.
Blood test for pregnancy
A blood test for pregnancy is performed in the laboratory. To date, a blood test for pregnancy is considered to be the most accurate method for diagnosing the earliest possible periods of pregnancy. This analysis in the laboratory is called: human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG, beta-hCG, b-hCG, hCG, hCG, b-HCG). Blood for this analysis is taken from a vein in the morning on an empty stomach.
Knowing the level of hCG in the blood, one can diagnose pregnancy already on the sixth or eighth day after conception. Its concentration in the blood is much higher than in the urine, so the laboratory analysis is much more accurate than the test strips sold in the pharmacy (in the urine, the hCG concentration reaches the diagnostic level 2-3 days later). In addition, the number of hormones can determine how pregnancy develops. For example, if the figures are below normal or there is no increase in concentration, then this may indicate ectopic or non-developing pregnancy.
Elevated hCG in the blood can occur in multiple pregnancies, in women with diabetes, early toxemia of pregnant women, with a mismatch between the actual and the prescribed duration of pregnancy.
A blood test for pregnancy is also performed in the situation when it is necessary to exclude an ectopic pregnancy. In this state, hCG is also produced, but the increase occurs in different amounts than in the corresponding period of a normal pregnancy (with ectopic pregnancy, the values and increase in hCG levels are lower than with uterine).
When to do a pregnancy test
Immediately after unprotected sexual intercourse, you should not run to the pharmacy for a pregnancy test or take a blood test for pregnancy. Neither in your blood nor in your urine is there yet a substance to which the test is set (the hormone hCG). Embryo implantation occurs at different times – between the sixth and twelfth day after ovulation, and hCG begins to stand out approximately 1-2 days after implantation into the uterus, so there is no point in doing a pregnancy test earlier than 10-12 days after ovulation.
Detection of the hormone hCG in the blood suggests that at least a week has passed after fertilization, and although it is possible to take a blood test for pregnancy a couple of days before the expected menstruation or on the first day of the delay, The most reliable result will be given by the test conducted on the third or fifth day of the delayed menstruation..
Is it possible to do a pregnancy test in the afternoon? What time of day is better to do?
The hormone that determines pregnancy does not disappear from the woman’s body depending on the time of day, and if the pregnancy has occurred, the concentration of hCG will only increase. Regardless of the pregnancy test chosen (normal test strips or inkjet pregnancy tests) if they are not particularly sensitive (the package should have a mark of 10 mMe / ml or 10 IU / l), for a pregnancy test before the date of the expected onset of menstruation use first morning urine, as it is the most concentrated (in the morning, the concentration of the hormone HCG, which is shown in the form of the second strip, is the highest). It is recommended not to drink too much fluid before testing.
However, if a pregnancy test is done from the day of the expected onset of menstruation (from the first day of the delay), then the test can be done at any time of the day – both in the afternoon and in the evening. By this time, the level of hCG in the urine is quite high, and the test will not be mistaken even if it is not used morning urine to conduct it.