How to test HCG levels

Written by nathaniel miller
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How to test HCG levels
Testing HCG levels is helpful in determining pregnancy. (pregnant image by AGphotographer from Fotolia.com)

HCG, or human chorionic gonadotrophin, is a hormone made during pregnancy by cells from the placenta. From there, it is released into the bloodstream after implantation takes place. You can detect HCG levels via a blood or urine test. Blood tests can show its presence approximately 11 days after conception takes place. You can do a urine test at home or in a lab, and it will detect HCG within two weeks of conception. An effective measure of HCG is a home pregnancy test, which checks the levels of HCG present in the body in comparison to the levels of a nonpregnant woman.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Home pregnancy test
  • Cup

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Calculate the day on which to test your HCG levels, which is seven days after your period was due. To test earlier, hold in your urine for at least four hours to let any HCG accumulate in the urine. Be sure to test the first urine of the day in either case.

  2. 2

    Obtain the urine sample by going to the bathroom as you naturally would. Let a small amount flow out, and then hold the home pregnancy test stick in the stream. To avoid the difficulty of this sampling method, utilise the cup. Collect some urine in the cup midstream and place the stick, absorbent tip down, into the cup. Refer to the pregnancy test's instruction manual to calculate how long the stick should be kept in the cup, but for most tests, ten seconds will suffice. Be sure to read the result in the time frame that is indicated to ensure the most reliable results.

  3. 3

    Check the manual to see what kind of result to expect and how to read the result. The majority of pregnancy tests have a window that shows a minus sign for a negative test and a plus sign for a positive test. More advanced tests show the word "Pregnant" on the stick's window if the test is positive.

  4. 4

    Repeat the test with another home pregnancy kit in the event that you are not sure what the original result means, if the lines are too faint to read, or if the lines have disappeared. Throw the stick away to avoid any confusion over lines that might evaporate.

Tips and warnings

  • If you get HCG injections, then it is highly advisable that you wait at least two weeks before you try a home pregnancy test otherwise there is always the chance that you might get a false positive.
  • If there is any doubt in your mind about your result, consider going to a doctor and getting a test done by the lab.

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