Over the counter pregnancy test – OTC Test

A pregnancy – whether wanted or unplanned – is a major event in any woman’s life. There are many decisions to make so knowing whether or not you are actually pregnant is quite important. Some women will visit their gynecologist or obstetrician for an answer while others will opt for an over-the-counter (OTC) home pregnancy test.

Best over the counter pregnancy test

OTC pregnancy tests typically test your urine for a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). HCG is only present if you’re pregnant. The hormone is only released if a fertilized egg attaches outside the uterus or to your uterine lining.

What is the best over the counter pregnancy test

OTC or “home” pregnancy tests rely on the fact that a woman’s body will only produce a particular hormone – human chorionic gonadotrophin or hCG – when they are pregnant. A small sample of urine – preferably, the first one of the day – is tested for this hormone. If it is present, then the woman is pregnant. One caveat, hCG is only present in minutes amounts for the first week of the pregnancy and then builds rather quickly afterward so false negative results are possible at the beginning of the pregnancy. If you have missed your period and the result is negative, retest after one week. If it is still negative, you should consult a physician for expert advice.

How accurate are over the counter pregnancy test

Even with the most effective birth control methods, there’s always a chance for error. After all, it takes just one sperm to fertilize the egg. Finding out whether or not that’s happened is as easy as taking an over-the-counter (OTC) pregnancy test.

However, there have been very few studies on the reliability of OTC pregnancy testing devices. A recent study in Germany by SiekmeierandLutz(2007) suggests that pregnancy testing kits are very reliable. They looked at all the notifications reported as failures to the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices in Germany of in vitrodevices (that includes OTC pregnancy testing devices) between 1999 and 2006. There were 207 notifications relating to OTC devices of which 25 (12.1%) were pregnancy testing devices. Notifications of these devices rely on doctors and users reporting failures and so this could be a gross underestimate of the true incidence of failures.

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