Pregnancy, Blood Test (hCG Qualitative)
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About Our Pregnancy, Blood Test (hCG Qualitative)
Note: Fasting is not required for this test.
This qualitative blood test detects levels of beta-hCG to confirm pregnancy. Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is a hormone produced by the placenta soon after embryo implantation; as such, beta-hCG is used for early pregnancy detection.
hCG is a glycoprotein that triggers the corpus luteum and encourages the production of progesterone, which causes the enrichment and thickening of the uterine wall to nurture the growing fetus. After implantation, hCG levels develop and rapidly increase, doubling every 48 to 72 hours. These levels continue to rise within the first 8-11 weeks of pregnancy before they peak, decline, and level off for the remainder of the pregnancy. hCG can be detected directly through a blood sample.
Early pregnancy symptoms can include:
- Missed period
- Nausea/morning sickness
- Tenderness, swelling, or tenderness in breasts
- Frequent urination
How accurate is the blood pregnancy test?
Blood testing for hCG is more sensitive than urine hCG testing.
How early can a blood test detect pregnancy?
Our hCG assay is highly sensitive to hCG concentration and can detect pregnancy as soon as 11 days after conception.
What do your results mean?
Our pregnancy blood test will indicate a positive or negative result for the detection of hCG to determine if you are or are not pregnant.
What is the difference between the qualitative and quantitative hCG test?
This qualitative test will indicate if hCG is or is not detected.
We also offer a quantitative hCG test that measures your hCG levels. If your qualitative test is positive, a quantitative test can help determine how far along you are. hCG levels vary based on a woman's gestation period and age.
The quantitative test may be used along with an ultrasound to help assess if you could be having multiple children, such as twins or triplets, or if there is an issue in the pregnancy, such as miscarriage, fetal death, or ectopic pregnancy (when an egg implants somewhere other than the uterus).
In men and non-pregnant women, elevated hCG values and concentrations can indicate the presence of abnormal tissues and tumors, especially those that develop from an egg or sperm such as ovarian or testicular tumors.