Possible to Get a False Positive Pregnancy Test?

Is It Possible to Get a False Positive Pregnancy Test Result?

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When you choose to take a home pregnancy test, you are using something that is extremely accurate. In fact, some are even as effective as 99%. However, there are times when you could get a false positive report when you take one. Here is some more information that will help you understand this a little better. Claim Your 20 Free Pregnancy Tests – Click Here

How Does a Pregnancy Test Work?

A pregnancy test is a very simple test that looks for certain hormones in your urine. The hormone, called human chorionic gonadotropin or hCG is present when you are pregnant. But, when you first become pregnant, there isn’t enough of the hormone to register a positive on a pregnancy test.

This is why tests ask that you wait until closer to the date of your expected period to get an accurate reading. You may already be feeling some signs of pregnancy like nausea and fatigue, and these symptoms multiply the farther along you get. When you do follow these instructions, you should be able to expect a very accurate reading. But, there are some reasons you may receive a false positive.


Chemical Pregnancy

Most of the time, when a woman has a false positive on a pregnancy test, that means she has gone through a chemical pregnancy. This occurs when the woman become pregnant, but when the pregnancy doesn’t last through the first month. Basically, the woman will experience a miscarriage early on in the pregnancy and not even realize it.

This type of pregnancy is actually really common. In fact, doctors estimate that between 25 and 40% of all pregnancies are a chemical pregnancy. They are most often detected when a woman takes an early pregnancy test that tests positive and then starts her period a couple of weeks later.


If you have been through a recent miscarriage, it is possible that a pregnancy test could say that you are still pregnant. This is because hCG can stay in your system for several weeks after your miscarriage. For some women, it even stays in their system after their period starts again.

Expired Tests

Finally, you should always make sure you are taking a test that isn’t expired. These types of tests won’t provide accurate results and you could very easily wind up with a false positive. When you are selecting a pregnancy test, you should also select one that is easy to read and whose instructions are easy to understand and follow.

These are all reasons you may wind up getting a false positive on a pregnancy test. For the most part, you should expect the test to give you accurate results, but sometimes underlying circumstances could affect them. If you do receive a false positive on your pregnancy test, make sure you talk to your doctor about it.

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Dr. Prabha Sahgal, MD
Dr. Prabha Sahgal, MD | ConceiveEasy
Dr. Prabha Sahgal MD, is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and subspecialty board certified in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. Dr. Sahgal holds a B.S. degree from MIT in molecular biology and currently serves on the ConceiveEasy board of directors.