A pregnancy test detects the presence of the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in urine or blood as early as 7-10 days after conception.
In general, it is best to wait until after a missed period before testing. This is when the hormone hCG (human chorionic gonadotrophin) is produced and can be identified. If you are unsure when your period is due or your cycles are irregular, speaking to your doctor or a healthcare professional may be helpful.
Even though home pregnancy tests have a high accuracy rate, they are not 100% accurate. There is a small margin of error. False-negative results can occur if the test is taken too early or if there is not enough of the hormone hCG in the urine. If the test is not performed correctly or it is expired, an incorrect result can occur.
Can I test too early?
If you’re taking a pregnancy test before your period is due, a negative result doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not pregnant. There’s still a chance that you could be pregnant. If your test detects hCG, your result will be positive and you can be confident that you are pregnant.
If the test is negative, but you tested before the day of your expected period, then there is the possibility you could still be pregnant but your hCG levels were too low for the test to detect. The levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) can differ among women, and there might not be adequate amounts of the hormone for the test to indicate a positive result.
Even a faint line means you are pregnant. If your result is negative, this can mean you tested too early or you are not pregnant. Since HCG levels rise quickly in early pregnancy, wait a few days and retest.
False-positive results are rare but can occur due to certain medical conditions such as a molar pregnancy. Therefore, confirming a positive result with a healthcare professional, who can also provide further guidance and support is recommended.
The Pregnancy Help Center offers medical-grade, lab-quality pregnancy testing. This means our tests have a higher sensitivity to detect the pregnancy hormone. Additionally, the PHC can assist you with resources, information, and options regarding your test result. We invite you to schedule a free lab-quality pregnancy test today.