How do you interpret an extremely faint line on pregnancy test ?

This is a common question when you are using ultra-early detection pregnancy test strips and one that can cause a lot of heartaches. The photograph below was supplied by a customer asking this very question. In fact, when we first looked at the photograph we could not see any line at all.

Our advice would be to ignore a line as faint as this and count it as a negative. Wait 48 hours and repeat the pregnancy test using a first-morning urine and see if the line is any stronger. Alternatively, you could try using a digital pregnancy test as this does not require the interpretation of lines.

We have recently heard about an online trend for digitally enhancing faint lines on pregnancy test strips to make them look more positive. This is not a good idea and will only lead to false hopes. The faint line that you are seeing me just be the test medium that is embedded into every test strip. If you digitally enhance this it may look like a positive, when it is, in fact, a negative. Some people mistakenly interpret these extremely faint lines as false positives when in fact they were negative.

Faint line pregnancy test
An extremely faint line on a pregnancy test strip

What we are looking for is a BFP (Big Fat Positive ) and this should be obvious to the naked eye. You should be able to see it clearly and it should not require a magnifying glass or digitally enhancing. It should resemble the Control line that is very clearly visible on this test strip above. As the pregnancy progresses the test line will get stronger in colour as more pregnancy hormone is present in the urine.

If you would like more information read our FAQ section about using ultra-early detection pregnancy tests and the pros and cons

 

There are so many pregnancy test kits on the market. How do I know which one to use ?

With so many pregnancy test kits on the market how do I know which one to use ?

If you have missed your period and you are looking for a pregnancy test to confirm your pregnancy then any chemist pregnancy test will do the job really well, and should hopefully give you a positive result. All modern home & professional pregnancy tests are very sensitive & accurate and false positives are rare. False negatives usually occur when the test is done too early or at the wrong time of day, so there is insufficient of the pregnancy hormone hcg in the urine sample.

Cheap pregnancy tests kits strips
Pregnancy test strips

If you looking for the cheapest pregnancy tests you will probably need to go online to purchase them. Pregnancy test strips are far cheaper than the leading brands of home pregnancy tests as they contain far less packaging and the technology is far simpler. You will be required to look for two lines on the test strip to confirm a positive pregnancy. They can also be bought in a range of sensitivities and can be bulk bought, if you are doing repeat or early testing before the missed period.

If you are testing early i.e. before you have missed a period , you will need to use an early detection pregnancy test kit which detects a lower level of the pregnancy hormone hcg in your urine sample. False positive can sometimes occur when you are doing very early pregnancy testing before the missed period, when you get a BFP followed several days later by a negative result or a period. This is usually referred to as a chemical pregnancy and means that for some reason the pregnancy did not continue.

More information on using ultra early detection pregnancy tests 

How to use ultra early pregnancy test strips

ultra early pregnancy test strips
Ultra early pregnancy test strips 10mIU sensitivity

Ultra early pregnancy tests have been around now for about 8-10 years. They detect a lower level of the pregnancy hormone hcg ( human chorionic gonadotrophin ) than normal pregnancy tests, and so can be used to detect pregnancy even before the period has been missed. Ultra early pregnancy tests detect just 10mIu of the pregnancy hormone hcg which means they can detect a pregnancy at a very early stage. Hcg increases dramatically in the first 3 months of pregnancy from less than 5mIU/ml to over 100,000mIU/ml and it is the huge rise in this hormone that is responsible for many of the symptoms of early pregnancy including morning sickness.

Pregnancy test strips including ultra early 10mIU pregnancy tests can be purchased online from Access Diagnostics UK fertility site

How do I perform the pregnancy test using a test strip ?

  • Collect a fresh urine sample, ideally first morning void , in a clean dry container. The container does not need to be sterile.
  • Read the instructions before you start the test. You will need a timer to time the test as timing is very important. Most mobile phones have a timer you can set to the correct time.
  • take the strip carefully out of the foil. Hold the strip at the handle end and avoid touching the strip end that will go into the urine as grease from your hands can interfere with the test
  • Immerse the strip into the urine sample up to the the maximum dip line and leave it there for 3-4 seconds so that it can absorb the urine. Do not dip it any deeper than the max dip line.
  • remove the pregnancy test strip from the urine sample and lie it flat. Start the timer and time it for the specified time in the instructions. This may vary slightly from brand to brand.
  • When the timer goes read the result. You should have a control line showing . This means the pregnancy test strip has worked properly. Now look for the test line. A visible test line on the strip means the test is positive. An absent T line means the test is negative.
  • You can only read the result at the specified time after you started the test. Do not come back to the test later and read it as this will not be an accurate result.

Important factors to consider when using an ultra early pregnancy test:

  • As ultra early pregnancy tests detect very low levels of hcg , it is best to test on your first urine void of the day, as this is usually more concentrated and so the pregnancy hormone hcg levels will be usually be higher at this time of day.
  • Follow the instructions and wait the allocated time as per the instructions (usually a few minutes ) before you read the result. Because the levels are much lower in very early pregnancy the result may take a little longer to show then later in pregnancy.
  • You will need to be prepared to re-test. A positive pregnancy test before the missed period should be confirmed 72 hours later and you would hope to see a the positive result developing more quickly on the test line indicating increasing hormone levels.
  • You may detect a pregnancy that will then fail to progress. In this case you will get a positive pregnancy test followed by a negative pregnancy test. This is one of the down side of testing for pregnancy early. If you had not tested you would never have known that you were pregnant.
  • False positives can occur if there has been a recent miscarriage or pregnancy
  • False negatives can occur with ultra sensitive pregnancy tests. If you do the test before the hcg levels have exceeded 10mIU in the urine sample you will get a negative result. This does not mean that you are not pregnant, it may just be that you have tested too early or you’re urine sample was too dilute. In this situation you should wait 48 hours and retest with a fresh urine sample (the first urine that you do in the morning after rising is the most concentrated)

Early Detection Pregnancy Tests

advanced_ultra_new150

Early detection pregnancy tests are the pregnancy tests that can detect a pregnancy at the earliest stage before the period has been missed.

They are more sensitive than a standard pregnancy test kit and detect lower levels of the hormone hcg . This hormone is released in large quantities during early pregnancy  and rises rapidly. It can be detected in the urine They are also know as ultra pregnancy tests or sensitive pregnancy tests.

Most standard home pregnancy test kits will give a positive result when the level of hcg reaches 25mIU in the urine. An ultra early detection pregnancy test will give a positive result when the hormone level reaches just 10mIU hcg in the urine making it far more sensitive and able to detect a pregnancy at an earlier stage. This can be as early as 8-10 days after ovulation or assisted conception.

Click here to find out more or to buy ultra early detection 10mIU pregnancy tests in UK

Click here to see frequently asked questions about using & interpreting early detection pregnancy tests 

 

Ultra Early Pregnancy Tests 10miu Review-pros and cons

Ultra early detection pregnancy tests have been available now for several years  and are proving very popular & reliable at diagnosing pregnancy before the missed period.

If you are using an ultra early sensitive 10miu hcg pregnancy test you need to test 1st thing in the morning on the first urine that you pass after waking, as the hcg level will usually be more concentrated then, and so you have a higher chance of detecting if you are pregnant or not.

Advantages of ultra early pregnancy test strips:

  • they detect lower levels of the pregnancy hormone hcg
  • they are easy to use
  • you find out sooner
  • the ultra early pregnancy test strips are excellent value for money

Disadvantages of ultra early pregnancy tests:

  • They may detect a very early pregnancy that then fails to continue, that you would otherwise not know about.
  • false negatives are more common, as the pregnancy hormone level in the urine, may not be high enough even for the ultra sensitive pregnancy test to detect.
  • you may need to test repeatedly until you get a positive pregnancy test or your period starts

Click here to buy ultra early detection pregnancy tests 10miu sensitivity

 

 

Can ultra early pregnancy tests give a false positive ?

This is a query we received recently, and we thought it was worth sharing the answer with our fertility blog readers.

”Last month I used one of the ultra early HCG tests on the day I expected my period, it came up positive.  The following day it was negative and my period started the following day.”

Here is our answer:

Ultra early pregnancy tests can result in this finding, as they detect chemical pregnancies.One issue with ultra early tests is that be that they detect very low levels of hcg ( usually 10mIU ), and can detect what are termed ‘chemical pregnancies’. ie were implantation starts but does not proceed to a viable pregnancy.
It is estimated that this happens quite frequently, but that we are normally
unaware of this as the period may be a only a day late or not late at all.
ie the pregnancy ends very early before we even know we are pregnant.
This is one of the drawbacks of ultra sensitive early pregnancy tests.

Click here for further information or to buy ultra early pregnancy tests in UK

Professional Pregnancy Tests

professional pregnancy tests strips
Instalert professional pregnancy tests

Our range of professional pregnancy tests offer affordable and highly accurate pregnancy tests suitable for use in the GP surgery, clinic or laboratory.

They have long expiry dates and are from leading brands INSTALERT

& Clearview

They are available in a range of sensitivities including 10mIU, 20mIU and 25mIU hcg detection and in a range of pregnancy test formats including strips, cassettes and midstreams.

Volume discounts are available on all professional pregnancy tests for NHS, healthcare, prisons, schools, labs, etc.

Click here for more information and pricing on professional pregnancy tests