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The Importance Of Levels Of Hcg In The Early Stages Of Pregnancy Read more at Suite101: Hcg Levels In Early Pregnancy: The Importance Of Levels Of Hc

Hcg levels in early pregnancy are what pregnancy tests are measuring in order to detect a pregnancy. These hcg levels can also help identify a pregnancy in trouble.

Read more at Suite101: Hcg Levels In Early Pregnancy: The Importance Of Levels Of Hcg In The Early Stages Of Pregnancy
Hcg levels in early pregnancy are what pregnancy tests are detecting in order to show a positive result. In early pregnancy, hcg levels will rise exponentially. The rate at which these levels rise is very important in indicating a viable pregnancy or detecting a possible miscarriage (1).

Hcg is short for "human chorionic gonadotropin", and is an important hormone that is produced shortly after conception. This hormone is extremely vital in early pregnancy because it maintains progesterone levels and sustains the corpus luteum of the ovaries (1).
Hcg In Confirming a Pregnancy

Pregnancy tests are taken to detect the presence of hcg in the body. Home pregnancy tests measure this level in the urine. If testing occurs too early, a faint line or a negative result will show. A faint line usually signifies a positive result, but the levels of hcg are just not high enough to show a strong positive (2).

Blood tests done at the doctor's office can detect a pregnancy a few days earlier than a home pregnancy test. While urine tests are designed to merely detect the presence of hcg in the urine, blood tests measure the actual amount of hcg in the blood. These are referred to as "quantitative" tests, and measure the hcg in milli-international units per milliliter (2).
Importance of the Rising Rate of Hcg

If there is some indication that something could be wrong with the pregnancy, a woman can be given two blood tests (quantitative) 48 hours apart to see if the hcg levels are doubling. Hcg levels should double roughly every 48 hours for the pregnancy to be considered viable. If the levels are not doubling within that time frame, or if the levels seem to be rising slower than normal, the doctor will closely monitor the mother during her first few weeks of pregnancy to watch for other signs of miscarriage (2).
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Detecting Problems in Pregnancy Using Hcg Levels

Hcg levels in early pregnancy need to double every 48 hours to sustain the pregnancy. If the numbers do not exhibit this type of rate of growth, it could signify the onset of a miscarriage. The most common causes of miscarriage include:

Ectopic Pregnancy

This happens when the egg implants itself somewhere other than the uterus (most likely in the fallopian tube). This will inevitably end up in miscarriage (2).

Molar Pregnancy

This is a rare condition where abnormal tissue forms instead of a developing baby (2).

Blighted Ovum

This occurs when a fertilized egg attaches to the wall of the uterus, but the embryo doesn't develop (2).
Hcg Levels in Multiple Pregnancy

High levels of hcg in early pregnancy could signify a multiple pregnancy, such as twins or triplets. Doctors will watch hcg levels closely and listen for two heartbeats if there is reason to believe that there is more than one baby developing.

The following chart will show the approximate range of hcg levels at each week in pregnancy. Hcg levels reach their peak some time around 12-16 weeks, after which the rise with taper off.

3 weeks: 5 - 50 mIU/ml

4 weeks: 5 - 426 mIU/ml

5 weeks: 18 - 7,340 mIU/ml

6 weeks: 1,080 - 56,500 mIU/ml

7 - 8 weeks: 7, 650 - 229,000 mIU/ml

9 - 12 weeks: 25,700 - 288,000 mIU/ml

13 - 16 weeks: 13,300 - 254,000 mIU/ml

17 - 24 weeks: 4,060 - 165,400 mIU/ml

25 - 40 weeks: 3,640 - 117,000 mIU/ml

Non-pregnant females: <5.0 mIU/ml

Postmenopausal females: <9.5 mIU/ml (3)

It is very important to remember that it isn't the actual number that really counts, but rather the rate of the rise. As can be seen on the above chart, the numbers range greatly. Hcg levels in early pregnancy are very important in both detecting a pregnancy and detecting any problems with the pregnancy.

Read more at Suite101: Hcg Levels In Early Pregnancy: The Importance Of Levels Of Hcg In The Early Stages Of Pregnancy

2 comments:

Jay said...

Good stuff. Thank you so so much for sharing your knowledge with the world through the Internet. Wonderful blog and post you got here
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Indya Reads said...

This is the most awaited moment of any couple. They want to know weather the lady is pregnant or not. These early pregnancy detection kits proves to be of great help to all couples who want to have a baby. OR also to couples who do not want an unwanted baby.

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