Pregnancy tests detect human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) in the urine or serum of a pregnant woman. HCG is produced when the pregnancy is implanted in the endometrium (ectopic pregnancies are implantations in other sites). Pregnancy tests are designed to detect this hormone.
Two types of urine pregnancy tests used by Family Planning Associates are the urine chorionic gonadotrophin (UCG) and the Early Pregnancy Test (EPT). Blood tests are not performed to determine pregnancy at Family Planning Associates.
- The UCG is a presumptive urine test offered to patients whose menstrual cycle is at least two weeks late. This test is not as sensitive as the EPT and results are available within the hour. There is a no charge for the UCG test.
- The EPT is a presumptive urine test offered to patients who have not yet missed their menstrual cycle but wish to determine if they are pregnant. There is a $15.00 fee for this highly sensitive test capable of detecting the pregnancy hormone within 7 days of conception. Results are available within the hour.
A first morning urine specimen is preferred for pregnancy testing because the pregnancy hormone is more concentrated.
Results: Pregnancy tests cannot be used alone as a diagnosis of pregnancy because false positive and false negative results can occur. False readings can be caused if the urine is too diluted, the pregnancy is very early, or in ectopic pregnancy.
In order to confirm a diagnosis of pregnancy, Family Planning Associates recommends that a pelvic exam be done by a clinician. Appointments can be made for this service.