Result of one pregnancy test can change lives forever. So, a pregnancy test can be very crucial in a woman’s life. But there are times when this test can give a false result. And it is very difficult to know the difference between a false-positive and a genuinely positive test result unless women know the reasons that can give false-positive results. So, it is of utmost importance that women know all the factors that can influence a pregnancy test.
The Pregnancy Kit
Pregnancy home kits are designed to recognize the presence of human chorionic gonadotrophin, or HCG hormone present in urine. HCG is a hormone that is produced during pregnancy. It is produced by the cells present in the placenta which are meant to support the growth of a fertilized egg and help it to attach to the uterine wall. This HCG hormone has many functions like all other hormones present in our bodies. This hormone promotes the formation of the corpus luteum, a normal ovarian cyst that produces progesterone. Progesterone is required for a healthy and problem-free pregnancy. HCG also plays a very important role in protecting the fetus from immune reactions of the body.
Commercially available pregnancy kits are promoted as 99% accurate. But this accuracy depends on the efficiency with which the whole process is conducted. There is a dipstick in the kit. A pregnant woman is supposed to take her mid-stream urine and put it on the dipstick for accurate results.
The HCG levels increase daily in a woman’s body during pregnancy. But if a woman thinks she is not pregnant or getting a false positive result, then she should immediately consult a physician to find out the real reason behind that. There are a few reasons why a pregnancy test can yield wrong results. Those factors have been listed below.
1. Underlying Medical Conditions
There are underlying conditions that can produce HCG hormone. Cancer can be one of the underlying conditions. Generally, every type of cancer cells produce hormones of some sort. There is a certain type of cancer cells that can produce beta HCG and give a false positive result. Ovarian tumors also can produce an elevation in the level of HCG. One kind of malignant cancer is choriocarcinoma which happens due to retained placental cells in the ovary. This cancer can produce high amounts of HCG that can very easily produce false positive results.
2. Morning Urine Wasn’t Used
It is likely to yield a false negative result even when you are pregnant in some cases. HCG levels are known to be highest in the morning urine. Hence, this urine is most effective in giving correct results. Stale urine might not have enough HCG in it to get detected by the kit. So, it is advisable that women take this test in the morning for accurate results.
3. False Alarm
This is another scenario in which women can get an inaccurate result. This happens when a woman is actually pregnant and the test taken during this time probably gave the right indication. But then nothing happens afterward. This happens when an embryo and placenta have been formed. And placenta produces HCG which gets detected by the kit. But afterwards the embryo stops growing and pregnancy never takes place. This is called as a chemical pregnancy. The test can give viable result in this case but it might not turn out to be a real pregnancy.
Normal over-the-counter medications might not affect our hormones to give false-positive results. But you might get a false result if you take a pregnancy test right after taking fertility drugs or some other hormone injections containing HCG. Some people take HCG injections for weight loss purpose. Hence, that can also give false-positive results.
So, now you know all the factors that can affect a pregnancy test. So, take your test carefully and consult a physician if you don’t get a satisfactory result.