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What is a blood pregnancy test?

Anyone who is trying to conceive knows how frustrating it can be to wait to take a pregnancy test. After deciding to grow your family and tracking your cycle, the process of waiting for the right time to test can feel like it just drags on forever. Most people take urine pregnancy tests to find out if they are pregnant, however, these tests require you to hold off testing until about 14 days past ovulation to get accurate results. If you simply can’t wait any longer and want to know whether or not you are pregnant earlier, a blood pregnancy test might be the way to go.

How is a blood pregnancy test different from a urine pregnancy test?

First, A blood pregnancy test will get you results faster than a urine test. These tests are so sensitive that they can detect a pregnancy as early as six days after conception. A urine pregnancy test isn’t as sensitive and typically only picks up hCG levels after 12-14 days. 

But that’s not all! A blood pregnancy test is a quantitative way to measure levels, which means it can identify the exact concentration of hCG in your blood. Unlike a urine test that simply tells you whether or not you’re pregnant, a blood test can offer more information about the stage of your pregnancy.  Some people choose to do both a urine test and blood test for more accurate results.

Confirming your pregnancy

If you opt for an over-the-counter urine pregnancy test first, a blood pregnancy test is the next step to confirm your result. Blood pregnancy tests can also give you some more specific information. As you may know, all pregnancy tests look for the presence of hCG (the pregnancy hormone) to confirm pregnancy, but blood pregnancy tests measure both the presence and the concentration of hCG. This means they can both confirm your pregnancy and give you a better estimate of how far along you are.

What else is a blood pregnancy test used for?

A blood pregnancy test is also an accurate way to know that your pregnancy is healthy and on track. Once you know how far along in the pregnancy you are, the blood test confirms that the amount of hCG in your blood is normal for the week of your pregnancy. Providers also use blood pregnancy tests to identify certain risk factors such as an ectopic pregnancy and to monitor at-risk pregnancies more closely. 

Knowledge is power

The early stages of pregnancy can be a nerve-wracking time for expectant parents. The ability to know exactly what’s going on in your body through tests and meeting with your provider can help ease some of those nerves along the way. If you think a blood pregnancy test may be for you, check out Labcorp’s pregnancy blood test. Labcorp provides a wide array of tests that users can order online that are especially relevant to pregnancy and those trying to conceive. In addition to the blood pregnancy test, Labcorp also offers a folate and vitamin B12 test, thyroid testing, and anemia testing. Labcorp is committed to offering women precise information to make the TTC journey just a little easier. 

Further testing

Once you get a positive pregnancy test, there are other tests you can do to ensure your pregnancy is as healthy as possible. For example, because both folate and vitamin B12 are crucial for a baby’s development, some expecting parents take a blood test to ensure they’re getting enough of these vitamins. It is also a good idea to check if you’re anemic. Anemia means your body has a lack of healthy red blood cells. It’s common during pregnancy and can cause headaches and make you feel sluggish and dizzy. Lastly, because hyperthyroidism is one of the leading causes of difficulty getting pregnant and staying pregnant, in certain instances some providers will recommend a thyroid test. This can also be helpful for some people who are TTC.

How to order

Ordering a blood test through Labcorp is as easy as tapping ‘add to cart’. You can choose the test through their website and no doctor visit is required. After you receive your test, take the requisition number you’ve been sent plus photo ID and head over to a Labcorp location to collect your blood sample. After the test has been completed you can view your results online from the comfort of your home!

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