It seems like you can buy pregnancy tests almost anywhere these days. Even the dollar store has them! However, one question always comes to mind: how accurate are they?
At Clearway Clinic, we purchase the best and earliest tests we can find. However, even the very best of tests which require a urine sample (which ours do) must be run according to the directions or the results can be false. Here are some common misconceptions:
“Pregnancy tests can be taken anytime and be accurate.” The reality is that they are not reliably accurate until a after a certain period of time. The tests work by reacting to a chemical manufactured by the pregnancy, called HCG. It takes a couple of weeks for that level to be high enough to be detected. Therefore, it is generally better to wait until one has missed a period before getting tested.
“The tests are the most accurate the longer they are left to develop.” The truth is that the tests should only be allowed to develop according to the directions on the package. Most tests must be read after only 3-5 minutes. If the tests sit out longer than that they could give a false positive result.
“Some women just never show positive with a urine pregnancy test.” Actually, urine tests are accurate for over 95% of all women, as long as the test is run properly. Usually the inaccuracy occurs when the test is too early. Of course, for 100% accuracy, blood tests are the most accurate of all.
Women used to have to wait a long period of time to have an accurate pregnancy test. In fact, many years ago women just had to wait until they grew larger and the baby began to move. Modern pregnancy tests have made all that waiting unnecessary. And, at Clearway, they are free!
Clearway Clinic: If you think you might be pregnant, we are Your Best First Step