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The HCG Beta Specific Serum test checks for the presence of the Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) hormone in the body. This test is performed to detect pregnancy as the HCG hormone is produced by the body during the gestation period. This test is generally prescribed for confirmation after a positive urine pregnancy test result.
The Beta HCG blood test is performed to determine the levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) hormone present in the body. The test can also help in the early detection of pregnancy. The HCG hormone is produced by the cells that line the embryo in the initial stages of pregnancy and later, it is produced by the cells of the placenta to provide nourishment to the fertilised egg. The HCG levels in the body are highest between the 8th and 10th weeks of gestation. The test is generally prescribed by doctors to confirm pregnancy after a positive result has been obtained in a urine test.....Read More
The beta hCG test can be performed as soon as 10 days post conception to determine if one is pregnant. The beta hCG test measures the level of the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) hormone, which is produced by the body in high amounts during pregnancy. This is one of the most reliable methods for determining pregnancy in its early stages and can be opted for after 8-10 days of missing a menstrual cycle.
One of the most common reasons for performing an hCG test is to confirm a pregnancy, and the test may be prescribed along with a urine test. In the early stages of pregnancy, the hCG test can also help assess the foetus’s age.
Both hCG and beta hCG are produced by the placenta of a pregnant woman but their main difference lies in the form in which they exist within the body. While hCG is found in the blood in a bound form, beta hCG is a form of the hormone that exists in a free form. As a result, detection of beta hCG in the blood is more accurate than hCG.
A beta hCG blood test can identify pregnancy as early as 6-8 days after ovulation. However, for a more accurate result, the beta hCG blood test should be opted for after at least 1-2 weeks of a missed menstruation cycle. In keeping with the same, most doctors also do not prescribe the beta hCG test until after the due date of one’s menstruation cycle has passed.
If one is not pregnant, their hCG levels should be less than 5 mIU/ml. On the other hand, the levels of the hormone, as detected by the beta hCG test (serum) for a pregnant woman will vary depending on how many weeks have passed since their last menstrual cycle.
Typically, the normal range of a beta hCG test (serum) for different weeks (after the last menstrual cycle) is as follows:
These ranges may also vary depending on if the person has regular or irregular menstrual cycles, and on how long these cycles are based on individual factors affecting one’s health. It is best to consult a doctor with the results of the beta hCG test (serum) for a proper diagnosis of the progression of pregnancy.
A positive result for a beta hCG lab test means that the person has elevated levels of the hCG hormone, which generally indicates a pregnancy. If the levels are higher than expected as compared to the gestation period, they may indicate being pregnant with twins or triplets or an increased risk of Down syndrome.
High levels of hCG in the lab test may also be indicative of various medical conditions like:
It is best to consult a doctor with the results of the hCG lab test for proper diagnosis.
The quantitative hCG test is one of the most accurate tests for confirming pregnancy. However, it has also been known to give false-positive or false-negative results. If the quantitative hCG test is performed too soon in the pregnancy when the body has not had the chance to produce enough amounts of the hormone, one may receive a negative result despite being pregnant, while there are several conditions like germ cell tumours, certain cancers, etc. that can elevate the hCG levels, resulting in a positive report even when one is not pregnant. A doctor can prescribe further tests as a follow-up to clear any doubt.
This test is generally prescribed in the early stages of pregnancy to check your HCG beta levels. In pregnancy, the beta HCG levels tend to rise pretty quickly, so the HCG beta specific serum test can be performed as early as 10 days after a missed menstrual period. Apart from confirming pregnancy, the HCG beta specific serum test can also help in determining the foetus’s age. This, in turn, allows checking for abnormalities like an ectopic (tubal) or molar pregnancy, diagnosing a miscarriage, and screening the baby for conditions like Down’s syndrome.
Certain types of cancers, like those of the ovary, testes, uterus, breast, or lung, are also known to increase the HCG levels in the body. So, the HCG beta specific serum tests can also help in checking the status of these conditions and to determine the efficacy of the treatment plan for the same.
Monitoring HCG levels can also help in the management of conditions like IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease), stomach ulcers, and liver cirrhosis.
Normally, the level of Beta HCG hormone in the body is less than 5mlU/ml. These values tend to double themselves in the body, starting from the 3rd week of gestation, peaking as gestation reaches the 10th week, after which the levels steadily fall. Higher than expected levels of HCG may indicate conditions like molar pregnancy, ovarian cancer, etc. in women and conditions like testicular cancer in men. On the other hand, lower levels of HCG may indicate the chances of a miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, etc. As the test may be prescribed to detect different conditions, it is best to consult your doctor about the results for a proper diagnosis.