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Blood vs. Urine Pregnancy Tests: What’s the Difference?

If you’ve missed a period, the one thing you need to know is whether or not you’re pregnant. When you Google “pregnancy test near me”, countless results appear. Some are the typical at-home tests you can find at any drugstore. You may also notice advertisements for clinics that offer blood-based tests.


You’ve probably got a lot of questions about accuracy, how fast you can get your results, and more. So, take a deep breath. We’re here to answer those questions, so you can make the best decision for your unique situation! Keep reading to learn more about your pregnancy test options!


What are the Different Types of Pregnancy Tests? How Do Pregnancy Tests Work?

You have two pregnancy test options: urine tests, which can be done at home, and blood pregnancy tests, which are performed in doctor’s offices. Both types of pregnancy tests detect a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), which is only produced during pregnancy.


As the name implies, urine pregnancy tests use a urine sample to detect HCG, while blood pregnancy tests use a blood sample. There are two types of blood pregnancy tests[1]:

  • Quantitative blood tests, which measure the exact amount of hCG in the blood.

  • Qualitative blood tests, which only determine if HCG is present in the body or not.

How Early Do Pregnancy Tests Work? How Accurate are Pregnancy Tests?


Urine Pregnancy Tests

You could get a positive result from an at-home urine test as early as ten days after conception. However, if you take it too soon, you could get a false reading. You may get a more accurate result if you wait to take a test until after you’ve missed your period[2].


When done correctly, urine pregnancy tests can be up to 97-99% accurate[3]. Results are typically available in 3 minutes, but if you wait too long to check, the reading may be inaccurate[2].


Blood Pregnancy Tests

Blood pregnancy tests can detect even small amounts of HCG before you’ve missed a period[3]. This means they can yield a more accurate result earlier in pregnancy[2]. However, they are only performed in clinics and doctor’s offices, so you will need to make an appointment and wait to receive one. Additionally, it can take hours or even days to get your results back[3].


Does the Type of Pregnancy Test Matter?

The type of pregnancy test you take is up to you! Urine pregnancy tests can be just as accurate as blood pregnancy tests when used correctly. They’re also cheaper and produce results much faster. If you’d rather have your pregnancy test administered by a professional, a blood test may be right for you.


Free Pregnancy Tests in Fresno, CA

Whatever test you choose, confirming your pregnancy can still be a difficult experience. Maybe you don’t want to be seen purchasing a pregnancy test. Maybe you want to be discreet, but you’d like someone by your side in such a big moment. Maybe you just don’t want this to be real at all.


The good news is, you don’t have to do this alone! Pregnancy Care Center provides free pregnancy testing, so you can get the confidential care and support you deserve! All tests are administered by our team of licensed medical professionals.


Give us a call at (559) 237-0683 to schedule your free appointment! All services are free and confidential.


Please be aware that Pregnancy Care Center provides lab-quality urine pregnancy tests only. We do not offer blood pregnancy tests. Additionally, we do not provide or refer for abortion services.

Sources

  1. Knowing if you are pregnant. Office on Women’s Health. (2022, February 22). https://www.womenshealth.gov/pregnancy/you-get-pregnant/knowing-if-you-are-pregnant

  2. Pregnancy Test: When to Take, Types & Accuracy. Cleveland Clinic. (2023, November 28). https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/9703-pregnancy-tests

  3. U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2022, November 8). Pregnancy Test. MedlinePlus. https://medlineplus.gov/lab-tests/pregnancy-test/

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