pregnancy test

What Is A False Negative Pregnancy Test And Why Does It Happen?

What Is A False Negative Pregnancy Test And Why Does It Happen?

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You have missed your period. Amid anticipation and hope, you do a home pregnancy test but the result leaves you dejected. After a missed period you must have been sure about your pregnancy, but the test shows a negative.

You wait for two weeks, but your periods don’t start. When you see a doctor, she confirms that you are pregnant. Can this even be possible? Yes, it occurs because your home pregnancy test has given you a false negative result.

How Common Are False Negative Pregnancy Tests?

A false negative result is more common than a false positive result. There is 10% likelihood of getting false negative result. Researchers have found that the results of home pregnancy test are more accurate (97.4%) when they are done by clinical technicians and less exact when done by the consumers

This section will explain the various reasons for false negative pregnancy test:

Checking before the test reaction time: Reaction time is the time you need to wait for the kit to show the exact result. Before you take the pregnancy test, read the instructions for the reaction time given on the kit box. It varies from three to ten minutes.

Testing too early: One of the common mistakes that women do is to take the pregnancy test too early. In the early stage of pregnancy, the level of hCG hormone remains very low and could go undetected in the test. Even a blood test cannot give an exact result in the early stage.

Date of the kit pack: Check for the expiry date on the pregnancy kit before buying it. An expired kit will result in false negative results.

Ectopic pregnancy: In this case, even if the woman is pregnant, she may get a negative result as the fetus forms in the fallopian tube instead of the uterus.

What to Do When You Get False Negative Result

Do the test again after a week. If your first test was negative, and your period didn’t start even after a week after the test, then take the test again. A gap of seven days will rise the hCG levels in your body; the test is likely to be positive if you are pregnant.

If you are unable to ascertain the home test result, talk to your doctor. A blood test or ultrasound scan (in the later weeks) can give you a clear picture about your pregnancy.

If the pregnancy result is negative, and your period hasn’t started, there could be several causes for missed periods. Seek a doctor’s help to put your monthly cycle back on track.