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5 Weeks Pregnant Hcg Level

5 Weeks Pregnant Hcg Level

5 weeks pregnant hcg level uses

When you're pregnant, it's natural to want to swap notes about every twitch and test result with other moms. But when it comes to hCG, the hormone detected in home pregnancy tests as well as the blood test variety, trading tales may just make you spin your wheels with worry. That's because every woman's hormone levels can fluctuate enormously from day to day, person to person, and even pregnancy to pregnancy.

A brand new placenta starts pumping out hCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin, a few days after the budding embryo implants in the uterine wall. Although low hCG levels are completely normal in early pregnancy (hCG is just starting to show up in your system, after all), it'll soon begin to soar, doubling every 48 hours, give or take. The rapid increase peaks somewhere between seven and 12 weeks after the last menstrual period (LMP), and then starts to decline. And somewhere in there, if you are expecting, your hCG levels will yield a positive pregnancy test!

How Physicians Interpret hCG Results

It is important to note that any single hCG test in early pregnancy does not tell much about the health of a pregnancy or fetus because individual women have a wide variation in hCG levels, and even one woman may experience wide variation in hCG numbers from one pregnancy to the next.

Rather, physicians look at the trend in the number among two or more tests. The hCG doubling time, over two separate blood tests spread over a period of days, usually provides more useful information than a single hCG level when evaluating a pregnancy. In most cases, the number will double over a period of 48 to 72 hours.

What Is hCG Human Chorionic Gonadotropin?

hCG stands for "Human Chorionic Gonadotropin," the pregnancy hormone, which is produced by the placenta and which is detected in the blood within a few days after implantation. When you test at home with a pregnancy test, you actually test for the presence of hCG in the urine. If hCG is present, then the pregnancy test will be positive, and that means you are pregnant unless there is a false positive pregnancy test.

What are normal hCG levels?

According to the American Pregnancy Association, it can be difficult to attach a number to “normal.” When women are not pregnant, however, their hCG levels will be under 5 mIU/mL — anything above 25 mIU/mL is considered positive for pregnancy.

hCG numbers can vary pretty widely, otherwise, with some increasing much faster and others tapering off more quickly. However, here are some general hCG readings based on gestation, with how many weeks have passed since your last missed period (LMP).

Where does hCG come from?

hCG is produced by the cells which will eventually become the placenta. Long before it is fully formed, the early placental tissue sends a message to the site of the ovarian follicle where the egg was released. This area is known as the corpus luteum and it plays a really important role in influencing the production of oestrogen and progesterone. These hormones are responsible for building up a rich vascular (bloody) lining in the walls of the uterus which will nurture and feed the developing embryo before the placenta has had a chance to form. Without this feedback loop occurring, the chances of the embryo surviving would be pretty slim. Issues relating to the function of the corpus luteum are thought to account some women experiencing fertility problems and early miscarriage.

But of course all of this upswing in hCG levels is occurring long before a woman has had her pregnancy confirmed. hCG starts being produced around a week after the egg has been released and then fertilised by the sperm. The woman may suspect she’s pregnant and be doing the date calculations, but it’s too early for there to be any definitive proof.

Causes of low hCG levels

If your hCG levels fall below the normal range, it’s not necessarily a cause for concern. Many women have gone on to have healthy pregnancies and babies with low hCG levels. Most women don’t ever have cause to find out what their hCG levels are specifically.

However, sometimes low hCG levels can be caused by an underlying problem.

Gestational age miscalculated

Typically, the gestational age of your baby is calculated by the date of your last menstruation. This can be easily miscalculated, particularly if you have a history of irregular periods or are unsure of your dates.

When low hCG levels are detected, it’s often because a pregnancy that was thought to be between 6 and 12 weeks is actually not that far along. An ultrasound and further hCG tests can be used to calculate the gestational age correctly. This is usually the first step when low hCG levels are detected.

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