When a woman has symptoms of pregnancy, a home pregnancy test is commonly used to confirm if she is indeed bearing a child. Home pregnancy test kits are created to measure levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in the urine. It is a known fact the blood tests are more accurate than urine tests; however, when done correctly, urine tests have 97% accuracy.
Inaccuracies in the result, characterized as false-negative or false-positive, are credited to failure in following instructions or errors in application. Other factors such as health, nutrition, dilution of urine sample and even emotional state can also affect the veracity of the results. In this article, we shall discuss the possibility of certain medications causing a false positive pregnancy test results.
A false positive pregnancy test result means that a woman, who is not actually pregnant, displayed a positive PT result. There are several medications that can cause this misleading outcome. Most of these medications, however, can only affect the veracity of urine tests. Listed below are drugs that you should avoid or consider when taking a urine test.
Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) injections - It was previously mentioned that PTs measure the level of hCG which rises when a woman is pregnant. However, there are hCG injections prescribed for hormonal imbalances which can cause a false positive pregnancy test result. Pregnyl, Profasi, and Novarel are some of these drugs. These are given to women undergoing fertility treatment to help the process of ovulation. On some occasions, these drugs are also prescribed after ovulation to improve chances of implantation. Some women also use hCG injections to lose weight. If you are taking such medications, there is a significant chance that you will have a false positive pregnancy test result.
Taking oral contraceptives will not affect urine test result, as opposed to popular belief. Birth control pills as well as antibiotics are not factors that can disrupt the accuracy of pregnancy test results. The hormones present in the pill are not significant enough to cause a change in your hCG level.
Psychiatric Medications - Psychiatric medications can also cause false positive pregnancy test results. One known anti-anxiety medication, Librium (chlordiazepoxide), is prescribed to control agitation people may experience during alcohol withdrawal. On women, this drug can also cause false positive pregnancy results on urine tests. Antipsychotic medication Thorazine, which contains phenothiazines and phenothiazine derivatives, can also cause a false positive urine test result.
Others - Aside from hCG injections and psychiatric medications, there are other common medications that can also cause a false positive pregnancy test result. Prescription that reduces body fluids, treatment for nausea and allergic reactions, as well as medication for heroin addiction can all cause false positive results. Anti-convulsants, prescription for Parkinson’s disease and tranquilizers can also disrupt the hCG level in a woman’s body. These medications can also harm an unborn child. When symptoms of pregnancy begin to show, it is best to confirm pregnancy right away by taking a blood test or visiting an obstetrician.
It takes a certain period of time for our system to clear traces of these drugs. Before taking a urine test, wait for a period of seven to fourteen days. This will ensure that the chemical compounds in the medication will no longer affect the result of the test. However, if your prescription must be taken on a daily basis, your only alternative is to take a blood test. Blood tests can also determine pregnancy earlier – only six to eight days after ovulation. You can also visit your obstetrician so he or she can advise you on the best method for determining your pregnancy.