Pregnancy Test Faint Lines and Evaporation Lines

The Two Big Pregnancy Test Questions:
1) How Early Can I Test for Pregnancy?
2) What Does a Faint Line Mean on a Pregnancy Test?

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How Early Can I Test for Pregnancy?
One question women frequently ask when trying to conceive is: How long do I have to wait before I can take a pregnancy test? Though hCG is produced at different rates in different women, there are general timelines for deciding when to test. However, when testing on the early side, do not rely on one test for conclusive results - especially a negative result: the hCG threshold for displaying a positive result on a home pregnancy test may not yet have been reached.
 
Early Detection Pregnancy Tests
 
When a woman becomes pregnant, the amount of hCG in her system should be around 25 mIU at 10 dpo (days past ovulation), 50 mIU at 12 dpo, 100 mIU at around two weeks dpo (these are averages that may deviate among different women). Test sensitivity equates with early-detection - and the lower the number, the sooner a test can detect pregnancy. At 20 MIU test sensitivity, you can begin testing at 7-10 days post ovulation, though the earlier you begin testing, the higher chance you have of getting a false negative. Early-Pregnancy-Tests.com carries early-detection pregnancy tests capable of detecting just 20 miu/ml hcg.
 
Here, implantation of the fertilized egg needs to take place before hCG is produced by the developing placenta, and that generally occurs at 6-10 dpo. If you decide to test early, make sure you perform a few follow-up tests every other day using first morning urine. Your hCG levels should rise exponentially, doubling every 2 days - which means that the follow up tests should eventually detect pregnancy if you are, in fact, pregnant.

For earliest detection of pregnancy, use first morning urine, as this urine sample contains the most concentrated amount of hCG. If using first morning urine is not feasible, avoiding urination for several hours before using a pregnancy test.
 Faint Line
A faint color band in the test area of a pregnancy test indicates, in most circumstances, a positive result for pregnancy.
However, a faint line appearing after the designated reaction time of the test may be an "evaporation line".
What Does a Faint Line Mean on a Pregnancy Test?
On a pregnancy test, a faint test line - or color band - is usually indicative of a positive result, as long as it's read within the time frame - or reaction time of the test (usually at 5-10 minutes). If you perform the pregnancy test properly and read results within the recommended time frame, then a faint or weak color band in the test area is very likely a positive pregnancy test.

Evaporation Lines
Evaporation lines, however, can confound results if tests are not interpreted within the clinically recommended time frame. An evaporation line develops when the urine on the test area begins to dry, leaving a faint, usually colorless line. Evaporation lines appear to show up (or not show up) as a result of the composition of the particular urine specimen - and they may appear on any test regardless of brand.

Explanations for Faint Positives
  • Testing Too Early: If you test too soon, hCG may not be at a sufficient level for test detection. See the section above on determining when to take a pregnancy test.

  • Low Test Sensitivity: Different tests detect hCG at different levels, from 20MIU to 100MIU or more. 20 MIU tests will display a faint line when when hCG levels are at 20 MIU, while less sensitive tests will display a negative result. At 50 MIU levels, a 20 MIU test will show a stronger color band while a 50 MIU test will show a very faint band.

  • Dilution of Urine Specimen: Urine specimens may be diluted due to frequent urination or consumption of liquids. First morning urine is recommended for pregnancy testing as it contains the most concentrated presence of hCG.

  • Chemical pregnancy: Sometimes an early pregnancy is detected - followed by negative test results. A chemical pregnancy means implantation takes place (hCG is produced for a short time) followed by a miscarriage (generally, before any other pregnancy symptoms are detected).

  • Evaporation Lines: Always read your test results within the test reaction time (usually 5 minutes) as evaporation lines can develop as the urine dries on the test area. Evaporation lines appear to show up (or not show up) as a result of the composition of the particular urine specimen - and they may appear on any test regardless of brand.
Remember, a pregnancy test does not function like "light switch" - and just turn on: different hCG levels will produce different gradients of color bands (from very light, faint lines early in pregnancy to dark, rich color lines later on as hCG develops).
Read More About Pregnancy Tests
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Comments

i took 3 tests and 2 showed up positive and the most recent one turned up negative...any ideas? i bled really bad with clots and i am very confused please help

Had a miscarriage April 12th, 2010 and was wondering if the faint line shows up because I was pregnant 4 weeks ago? Do anyone know?

just want to know if im preg or not because i test the first line that come up was a negative then afterwards a light line showed on the positive side so does this mean that im preg or not please help im reli stressing...

I lost the directions for wait time before you review ovulation test results. I waited 3min and got one dark line and one faint line. then left it on the counter and totally forgot to go back. Anhour later I remembered and went back. By that time, there were 2 dark lines. Can I count on this to be accurate or should I assume it was an evaporation line?

Me and my fiance have been trying for 2 months using ovulation strips for one month I am 11 dpo and got 5 pos hpt all different brands...went to the doc today and they said it was neg...I got blood work but won't find out till tomorrow...this is #3 for me and my other two pregnancies were faint lines 3 of todays tests were faint lines...I'm 150% sure I'm prego. No matter how light the line is if its there its pos...it means some amount of hcg was detected.

Frequent urination during the first month of pregnancy is an early pregnancy symptom. So if you notice that you start seeing bathroom suites too often, than it is time to be alert!

One of the first signs of pregnancy include fatigue, often times extreme, headaches and mood swings. Your emotions might seem out of whack. If you feel like crying for no reason, it's ok. Go ahead and cry. Your partner will understand as long as he knows he's not responsible.

If you have any doubts, go to your doctor and ask them to do a blood test for pregnancy. Call a few clinics first and find out which ones can give you the results that day. It will depend on whether they have a lab in-house. When I was in college, I had a false positive on a urine test. After that I learned to go get a blood test to know for sure. When I got pregnant with my son, I was able to get blood drawn and get the results 20 minutes later. There's no question with the blood test.

I have never been pregnant- but Im in a committed relationship where we havent been being exactly careful. I have had a couple "funny" periods the last couple months- inconsistant and irregular, super light and last 2 days- this is not my norm by the way. I did take a pregnancy test this morning and there was an extremely light line and a darker negative line then tonight I took another that was negative. Any thoughts on what this can mean? I know the HCG levels will be higher in the AM but if it possible for it to show up negative if the level isint high enough? I havent technically missed a period yet and Im just freaking out, I guess I just feel like Im needing some reassurance- one way or another. Any thoughts?

i was in the bath the other day and noticed i had breast milk leaking out my left breast so i did a pregnancy test about 20 minutes later and i got a dark line and a faint one come up i am not due on my period for another 2 days so am i pregnant or do i need to wait to do another one?

I have had three pregnancies and 2 of them came out great but one of them was a mc with all three of them i tested to early and got very faint lines no matter how many times i tested, as each day went on i would test n that line would get darker and darker except with mc it got lighter n lighter, but point is those faint lines 9 times out of 10 means your pregnant as long as they keep getting darker you are usually good to go! Hope that helps!

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