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Can Ectopic pregnancy be detected by a quantitative beta HCG blood test?

By Anonymous February 10, 2012 - 12:10pm
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Is it possible to get a negative quantitate blood hcg test 2 weeks after a missed period and actually be pregnant? I'm scared about an ectopic pregnancy. I had a quant beta hcg blood test done 2 weeks after my period due date which would've been Jan 21, and my result was <2.0 NEGATIVE. So now I'm wondering what could be wrong, I've been experiencing abdominal pain but it is not accompanied by any bleeding or shoulder pain or nausea. The only other thing is that my breasts are tender. I'm also on birth control and have been since April 2011 and have never missed a pill, always take them on time. The only thing is that I switched brands last cycle and moved to a lower dose, so that also may indicate why I missed my period. I'm just trying to understand if an ectopic pregnancy would have been detected by now.

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HERWriter Guide

Hi Anon

An ectopic pregnancy is always unknown at first but should present on a pregnancy test like a regular pregnancy. As you probably know, an ectopic pregnancy is dangerous to the mother so you may want to think about getting an ultrasound just to be sure.

If you are not pregnant, talk to your doctor so that your symptoms can be diagnosed and treated. A pregnancy at this stage should definitely show up on a test but it's better to err on the side of caution.

Good luck to you!


February 10, 2012 - 1:04pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

Hi there I would really appreciate it if you could respond to my reply post when you get a chance, I could really use your help.


February 11, 2012 - 1:14pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

Thank, Susan.
My appt with my gyno is on Monday. Until then, do you think I have a cause to worry? I also took an HPT this morning (the first response early result) which would now make it about 3 weeks after expected period, and that came back negative as well. Can I trust these results and know that I am not pregnant and that my abdominal pain may be due to something else which warrants further investigation?

February 10, 2012 - 1:07pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi again Anon!

Pregnancy tests are very accurate for the vast majority of women but some women do not get accurate results until some weeks after their period is due. This is not a very common occurrence but it can happen. Therefore I can't say categorically that you have no cause to worry.

Please let me know what your GYN has to say, I'll be checking back for your update and good luck!


February 13, 2012 - 2:03pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

Hi Susan,
I went to my gyn and got an ultrasound done. He found a fluid like mass of 4mm in my uterus and said that he wants me to get an MRI done. I actually have a vaginal septum so he wants to investigate and see if I have two uteruses.
Here's my worry, and I didn't really want to discuss it with him because he didn't bring it up. He ran a urine pregnancy test, and this makes it about 3+ weeks since my last period and it came back negative. Is there any way that that sac could be a gestational sac? Are there any occurrences where women don't have any hcg levels but a sac does show on an ultrasound? There was nothing in it- it was just black. I felt really embarrassed asking him so I didn't since he never brought it up either, but now I'm worried about it.

February 13, 2012 - 7:58pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

Why would you be embarrassed to talk to him about this? This is a very legitimate question!

To my knowledge, women with a gestational sac do tend to get positive pregnancy tests but this isn't always the case.

Please call your doctor's office and ask anything you feel is important! When is your MRI scheduled?


February 14, 2012 - 12:58pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

My MRI is not scheduled as yet. Are you sure that it is possible to not have pregnancy tests but show a gestational sac? Even with blood tests? Everything that I have been reading online says that a gestational sac is only present when HCG levels exceed 1000. Please confirm this for me.

February 14, 2012 - 7:38pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Yes, Anon, this is true for vaginal scans.

You don't know yet what this "mass" is although if it is a gestational sac, then a vaginal ultrasound should show it within about 6 weeks of pregnancy - this is 2-3 weeks after a late period. There can be reasons for false negative home pregnancy tests although they are rare. They include faulty or expired tests, very low  or fallen hcg levels (meaning a sac may have been there, or is still there but the pregnancy is not viable - this sac should be expelled soon, or a woman not taking the tests properly.

Again, you are assuming the mass is a gestational sac, even though your tests are all negative. I can't tell you if you are pregnant or not - your doctor can only tell you that so you will have to wait to find out what this mass is. If you are pregnant, then you have gotten false negative tests - which are very rare.But to say false negatives are 100% impossible would be incorrect.



February 16, 2012 - 10:53am
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