Feature | Pregnancy Test Accuracy | What You Didn't Know | How accurate are pregnancy tests after a missed period

Pregnancy Test Accuracy | The Fascinating History of At-Home Pregnancy Tests You Need to Know!

Last updated on April 18th, 2023 at 06:06 pm

Pregnancy test accuracy is a key part of preparing for a new child. Many women use a home pregnancy test to verify their results. Although it’s a common way to determine pregnancy, it’s actually a new innovation. Until the late 1970’s, women went to a medical doctor to verify a pregnancy. So before you decide to buy a home pregnancy test, you can first enjoy learning the history behind them.

Pregnancy Test Accuracy | The History of a Simple Test for Preparation to Motherhood

The Invention of the Pregnancy Test

Home pregnancy tests for women weren’t available until 1977. The invention of the home pregnancy test didn’t take long, though. It was the controversy about the tests that prevented it from reaching women at home earlier.

A woman named Margaret Crane came up with the idea behind home pregnancy tests. She was an artist who lived in the West Village of New York. Crane came up with the idea when she visited the headquarters of her company in 1967. She saw rows of chemicals doctors used for pregnancy testing. Crane realized that a doctor was unnecessary for the test.

Early designs used tassels and flowers, but Crane vetoed the ideas. She felt a simple system was a better choice. The common use of a plus or a minus sign to show positive or negative became the core of the design.

Fears Related to the Tests

Fears Related to the Tests | Pregnancy Test Accuracy | What You Didn't Know | how accurate are pregnancy tests after a missed period

In 1967, Crane developed the prototype of a home pregnancy test. The challenge was getting the test to the market. Fears surrounding the tests prevented it from reaching women until 1977. It took 10 years to reach the market, even though there was interest in the product. Pharmaceutical companies hesitated to promote the product. They believed it would appeal to women with loose morals. The companies didn’t want to harm their reputation with the idea that they may also have loose morals.

A key fear associated with pregnancy tests among the public was a risk of suicide. Many believed that young women would attempt suicide if they discovered they were pregnant before marriage. When the prototype reached pharmaceutical companies, out-of-wedlock pregnancies were unusual. Society considered out-of-wedlock mothers immoral and didn’t treat them well.

The final concern associated with the tests was whether women would use it correctly. Opponents of the pregnancy test assumed women could not follow the instructions. They suggested that a heightened emotional state would impact women’s behavior. Opponents to the test implied that women were too emotional to handle the tests.

Getting Accurate Results

Getting Accurate Results | Pregnancy Test Accuracy | What You Didn't Know | how accurate are pregnancy tests after a missed period

The first home pregnancy test, called the Predictor, finally hit the market in 1977. Since releasing the test, roughly 80 percent of women discovered they were pregnant just by doing the test at home.

Pregnancy test accuracy depends on the way you use the test. How accurate are pregnancy tests after a missed period? It depends on the test and the timing. If you wait until five days or one week after a missed period, then you have a greater chance of accurate results. If you test too early, then you may have a false negative.

Early testing has another potential downside. You may have a positive result and then discover that you aren’t pregnant. Pregnancy is more than a fertilized egg. It must also implant. If the fertilized egg does not implant, then you’re not pregnant. An early test can show a positive result, but a later test shows different results. The reason is that a fertilized egg changed your hormonal balance, but it wasn’t able to implant.

The final aspect of pregnancy test accuracy is the actual kit. Don’t assume every test identifies a pregnancy. You might buy an ovulation kit instead of a pregnancy test or make the same mistake in reverse. Both tests check for chemicals and have similar instructions. Make sure you buy a pregnancy test and not an ovulation kit. If you buy the wrong type of test, then you won’t have accurate results. A pregnancy test is very accurate after a missed period.

Reactions demonstrates a brief review of the chemistry behind an at-home pregnancy test

YouTube video

Pregnancy testing has improved over time. Since the home pregnancy test was first released to the public, the accuracy of the test has improved. The majority of women can verify a pregnancy at home without going to a doctor. If you’re testing for pregnancy, then follow the instructions to get your results. The accuracy of the tests improves with each passing day due to the hormone levels in your body. Nonetheless, if you’ve got a couple of positive results and just want to be 100 percent sure you’re pregnant, a visit to your obstetrician will give you peace of mind.

Based on your experience, how accurate are pregnancy tests before a missed period? What were the factors that affected the accuracy? Let us know in the comments section below.

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