Is it Possible to Have a False-Negative Pregnancy Test Result?




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False-Negative Pregnancy Tests

At Your Options Medical, we have found that when many of our patients have a negative pregnancy test result, they assume they are not pregnant. However, this is not always the case. False negative pregnancy tests do occur. Here is how it works:

A urine pregnancy test detects the hormone called hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin). This is the hormone your body produces during pregnancy. When urine is being tested for the presence of this hCG hormone and a woman is pregnant, the result of the pregnancy test should read positive. However, there are a few reasons a pregnancy test can give a false test result including the following:

  • In early pregnancy, the hCG hormone levels may be too low for a pregnancy test to detect. The earliest time to test for an accurate result is 7-10 days after a missed period.
  • The best time of day to take a pregnancy test is first thing in the morning when a woman’s urine is highly concentrated. Because urine may be less concentrated later in the day, the test may not be able to detect the hCG hormone.
  • If you have had a negative pregnancy test, but are experiencing pregnancy-like symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, tiredness, loss of appetite, etc. it is always best to contact your doctor to access for causes unrelated to pregnancy.
  • There is always the possibility of human error when performing home pregnancy tests. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Most pregnancy tests require you to let the test set for 3-5 minutes. If the test is left beyond the recommended set time, this could produce a false test result.
  • If you had a tubal ligation (i.e. tubes tied), are experiencing pregnancy-like symptoms, and test negative on a pregnancy test, contact your medical doctor to assess for causes unrelated to pregnancy.

If you think you might be pregnant because you have missed your period, know that there are other reasons besides pregnancy. To learn more, check out our blog.

Contact Us

If you think you might be pregnant, Your Options Medical can offer you pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling at no cost to you and insurance is not required.

 

Contact us today to learn more!


776 responses to “Is it Possible to Have a False-Negative Pregnancy Test Result?

  1. Hey my name is Mary. I have all the signs and symptoms of pregnancy like feeling nauseous and pee often and loosing appetite.. but my test results says Negative.. what is wrong am I still pregnant??

    1. Hello Mary,

      Thank you for your inquiry.
      To answer your question: yes, it is possible that you could be pregnant and receiving a false test result on the pregnancy tests. This can be due to several factors including the fact that you could be pregnant but very early on. Without more information, it is not possible for me to determine if you could be pregnant or not. Here is some information about testing. I hope it is helpful.
      Typically, we recommend the best time to take a pregnancy test is one week after you are due to start your period. Also, the best time to test is first thing in the morning. If the test reads negative, we recommend testing again in about one week.
      You may want to consider requesting a blood pregnancy test from your primary care physician or OB/GYN as these tests are more accurate at detecting pregnancy than urine tests. This way if pregnancy is ruled out, your doctor can further assess your symptoms. If symptoms persist and pregnancy tests continue to be negative, seek medical attention.
      If your blood test comes back positive, the next step would be to have an ultrasound to determine if you are definitely pregnant. You would want to ensure the person performing the ultrasound confirms the following four things: 1). If the pregnancy is in the uterus. 2). Measure to determine the dating of your pregnancy (how far along you are). 3). If there is a detectable heartbeat. 4). If there are multiple babies or just one.
      At Your Options Medical, we provide free pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022.
      Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.

      Best Regards,

      Barbara, RN

  2. Hello, I would love to consult regarding to what I am experiencing. My lower abdomen often cramps a little or sometimes it aches like there is air inside. This april, I had a drop of light pink and thick milky discharge (just a one drop). My period is due on April 21, but April 20 I have a brown spotting until 22, and in april 23 I have started few flows of light blood, untill 24-25 I have a light period light flow with sometimes a little bloodclots. I have higher sense of smell than usual, my head turns light and dizzy at times, so I conducted a test on April 24 but turns out negative. Will you help me? What could this be?

    1. Hello Leah,
      Thank you for your inquiry.
      I cannot say what is happening with your period. Sometimes it is possible to have a light period when one is in the earliest stage of pregnancy, but it would be likely you would have a positive test at this point.
      Typically, we recommend the best time to take a pregnancy test is one week after you are due to start your period. Also, the best time to test is first thing in the morning. If the test reads negative, we recommend testing again in about one week. You may want to consider requesting a blood pregnancy test from your primary care physician or OB/GYN as these tests are more accurate at detecting pregnancy than urine tests. This way if pregnancy is ruled out, your doctor can further assess your symptoms.
      If symptoms persist and pregnancy tests continue to be negative, seek medical attention.

      If your blood test comes back positive, the next step would be to have an ultrasound to determine if you are definitely pregnant. You would want to ensure the person performing the ultrasound confirms the following four things: 1). If the pregnancy is in the uterus. 2). Measure to determine the dating of your pregnancy (how far along you are). 3). If there is a detectable heartbeat. 4). If there are multiple babies or just one.

      At Your Options Medical, we provide free pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022.
      Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.
      Best Regards,
      Barbara, RN

  3. Hi, I’ve taken multiple at home test and they’ve came back negative along with the blood test from the ER. Should I see a gynecologist?

    1. Hello Elizabeth,
      Thank you for reaching out to Your Options Medical with your concern.

      It sounds like you have missed your period and have taken home pregnancy tests as well as a blood pregnancy test which have all come back negative. Is your concern your missed period? If this is the case, there are a number of factors that can affect your period such as stress, illness, age, medications and changes in diet and/or exercise. If you are concerned about your missed period, it is reasonable to consult with your gynecologist.

      At Your Options Medical, we provide free pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022. Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.

      Best Regards,
      Barbara, RN

  4. Hi…
    I do have kids, in april i had to go for my 3 month shot, we decided to stop my shots and try.. 28 maart i had my period on and of for days.. We have been trying. I had takin 2 home test and negative… I am nausea at night mostly.. My appetite is much lower… But still negative.. Will i struggle to get pregnant..

    1. Hello Dominique,
      Thank you for reaching out to Your Options Medical with your concern.
      I cannot say if you will struggle with getting pregnant after being on birth control. It is possible that it may take a few weeks to many months to get pregnant after your last shot. During this time, you can help your body prepare for pregnancy. There are sites online that can give you advice on how to get your body ready for pregnancy. Try not to worry as stress can negatively affect your body.
      The best time to take a home pregnancy test is at least one week after a missed period using your first urine of the day. If this is negative, I suggest you repeat a home pregnancy test a week later. If this is negative and you continue to have symptoms, you can ask your doctor to order a blood pregnancy test. If this too is negative, you can then consult with your doctor about your missed period and your symptoms.
      At Your Options Medical, we provide free pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022. Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.
      Best Regards,
      Barbara, RN

  5. Hi I have missed my period for 12 days now. Got a regular pregnancy testing kit, was tested Negative. My appetite changed from not eating a lot to eating a lot this month. is it possible that I am pregnant.

    1. Hello Barbara,
      Thank you for reaching out to Your Options Medical with your concern.
      Typically, we recommend the best time to take a pregnancy test is one week after you are due to start your period. Also, the best time to test is first thing in the morning. As it sounds like this test read negative, we recommend testing again in about one week. You may want to consider requesting a blood pregnancy test from your primary care physician or OB/GYN as these tests are more accurate at detecting pregnancy than urine tests. This way if pregnancy is ruled out, your doctor can further assess your symptoms. If symptoms persist and pregnancy tests continue to be negative, seek medical attention.
      There are other factors that can affect your periods such as stress, medication, illness, age, and diet and/or exercise changes.
      At Your Options Medical, we provide free pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022. Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.
      Best Regards,
      Barbara, RN

  6. Hi My name is Barbara,

    I have missed my period for 12 days now, i have done a pregnancy test and it was negative. However i feel like nausea and lighheadedness plus my appetite has changed from less eating to more eating just this month. i dont know whats going on with me, hope to hear from you.

    1. Hello Barbara,
      Thank you for reaching out to Your Options Medical with your concern.
      Typically, we recommend the best time to take a pregnancy test is one week after you are due to start your period. Also, the best time to test is first thing in the morning. As it sounds like this test read negative, we recommend testing again in about one week. You may want to consider requesting a blood pregnancy test from your primary care physician or OB/GYN as these tests are more accurate at detecting pregnancy than urine tests. This way if pregnancy is ruled out, your doctor can further assess your symptoms. If symptoms persist and pregnancy tests continue to be negative, seek medical attention.
      There are other factors that can affect your periods such as stress, medication, illness, age, and diet and/or exercise changes.
      At Your Options Medical, we provide free pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022. Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.
      Best Regards,
      Barbara, RN

  7. Hey this is Angel and I’m confused I took a pregnancy test at the doctor’s office and they said negative so I go ahead and take the Depo shot and all of a sudden I wake up to severe adomal pain and I can barely move or walk I looked up what it might be and it said I’d I was having that symptom it might be a outside pregnancy which is bad I was just wondering is it that or is it just a side affect

    1. Hello Angel,
      Thank you for reaching out to Your Options Medical with your concern.
      While stomach cramps and pain can be an adverse effect of the Depo-Provera injection, I strongly recommend that you call your doctor to get attention to this matter. Severe stomach pain can be a symptom of many illnesses. It is best to get medical attention as soon as possible to rule out any serious condition.
      At Your Options Medical, we provide free telehealth calls with a nurse, pregnancy testing, ultrasound, and pregnancy options counseling. To schedule your confidential appointment, please call or text 508-251-9022.
      Thank you, again for reaching out and please do not hesitate to contact us in the future if we can be of any further help.
      Best Regards,
      Barbara, RN

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