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False-Positive Test Result

A false-positive test result is one that appears to detect a disease or condition when in fact it is not present. A false-positive test result may thus suggest that a person has the disease or condition when he or she does not.

For example, a false-positive pregnancy test result would be one that appears to detect the substance (human chorionic gonadotropin) that would confirm pregnancy, when in reality the woman is not pregnant.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Thomas M. Bailey, MD - Family Medicine
Last Revised May 6, 2011

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 06, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.