A home pregnancy test is simple to do and can give you an
accurate answer in 2 to 5 minutes.
Improved technology has made the urine home pregnancy test about
as accurate as blood tests--99 percent under perfect conditions--although
in actual use it may be less than that.
Using a woman's urine, a home pregnancy test detects the presence
of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a hormone produced only during
pregnancy. The tests contain monoclonal antibodies, which are molecules
coated with a substance that bonds to the pregnancy hormone. If the
hormone is present, a colored stripe, dot, or other symbol appears
in the test windows. The tests also contain "control" windows to indicate
whether the device has functioned properly.
Although the makers of today's tests say their products can detect
hCG as soon as the very day a missed period was supposed to begin, they
also advise taking the test again a few days later to confirm the result.
If the result is positive, see a doctor as soon as possible.