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How To Use A Pregnancy Test

By Donna Somerkin

The question of whether or not you are pregnant is often one of the most exciting, anxious, and stressful queries that affect not only your health, but your life. There are different types of pregnancy tests on the market or available through your primary health care provider. Typically, the actual steps for using a pregnancy test are quite easy and can be performed in the comfort of your own home. However, the results of a home pregnancy test should always be confirmed with a blood test performed by your primary health care provider.

By far, the most commonly used method of pregnancy test is those that use urine to detect the hormone associated with pregnancy. This hormone is triggered when an embryo implants in the uterine wall, but it can also be produced if an embryo mistakenly implants in the Fallopian tubes, which is known as an ectopic tubal pregnancy. There are two different types of pregnancy tests. The first type can produce more accurate results, but may prove to be too messy. A cup is provided to catch urine, after which the urine is collected and a special stick or other device is inserted in the urine. Sometimes, the stick or device is dipped directly into the urine filled cup for a certain amount of time. Other times, a small eye dropper is provided to perform a more accurate version of the same test.

Although this method of urine testing may be more accurate, the devices meant to collect urine in mid stream are the most popular. These sticks are usually found over the counter in your local drug store or grocery store and can be completed within seconds. Instead of a more scientific project, this type of urine based pregnancy test is preferred by women because of the lack of steps. Simply hold the stick in a stream of urine for a specific amount of time"usually a few seconds"and then wait for the results. As opposed to sticks that are more difficult to read, there are a couple companies that now have models on the market that have a digital read out system. Also, there are models available that allow you to determine whether or not you are pregnant much sooner than traditional home based tests.

For a more accurate test that can detect whether or not you are pregnant before a urine based test. This test must be performed in your physician's office and will require a few vials of blood drawn. After the blood is drawn, tests are performed to detect the presence and the amount of the hormone associated with pregnancy. Keep in mind that you should always have a blood test performed after you have received a positive reading for a home pregnancy urine based test.


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