BETA HCG Pregnancy
Why to get tested?
To confirm a pregnancy; to help identify an ectopic pregnancy; to monitor a pregnancy that may be at risk of failing; occasionally to screen a woman for pregnancy prior to some medical treatments; as part of a panel of tests used to screen for fetal abnormalities (see First Trimester Down Syndrome Screen and Second Trimester Maternal Serum Screening)
When to get tested?
When you suspect that you are pregnant (testing can be done reliably by 10 days after you miss your menstrual period and some methods can detect hCG even earlier); when you have signs and symptoms that suggest you may have an ectopic pregnancy or a pregnancy that is failing; prior to some medical treatments
What sample needed?
A urine sample collected first thing in the morning or a blood sample drawn from a vein in your arm
What preparation I need before test?
Do not drink large amounts of fluid before collecting a urine sample for a pregnancy test because overly diluted urine may result in a false negative; no preparation is needed for a blood sample.