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What types of blood pregnancy tests are available?

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Two types of blood pregnancy tests are available:

  • A qualitative hCG test simply checks for the presence of hCG is present. It gives a "yes" or "no" answer to the question, "Are you pregnant?" Doctors often order these tests to confirm pregnancy as early as 10 days after a missed period. Some of these tests can detect hCG much earlier.
  • A quantitative hCG test (beta hCG) measures the exact amount of hCG in your blood. It can find even very low levels of hCG. Because these pregnancy tests can measure the concentration of hCG, they may be helpful in tracking any problems during pregnancy. They may also (in combination with other tests) be used to rule out a tubal (ectopic) pregnancy or to monitor a woman after a miscarriage, when hCG levels fall rapidly.

From: Pregnancy Tests WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Pregnancy Association: "Understanding Pregnancy Tests: Urine & Blood." 

American Pregnancy Association: "Taking a Pregnancy Test." 

American Pregnancy Association: "Pregnancy FAQ: Early Pregnancy."

Department of Health and Human Services: "Pregnancy Tests: FAQs."

Lab Tests Online: "hCG."

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on February 11, 2019

SOURCES:

American Pregnancy Association: "Understanding Pregnancy Tests: Urine & Blood." 

American Pregnancy Association: "Taking a Pregnancy Test." 

American Pregnancy Association: "Pregnancy FAQ: Early Pregnancy."

Department of Health and Human Services: "Pregnancy Tests: FAQs."

Lab Tests Online: "hCG."

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on February 11, 2019

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How accurate are pregnancy tests?

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