When we posted a survey on MFM asking for your thoughts on early pregnancy tests over 1100 of you spoke out. Early pregnancy tests detect very small amounts of the pregnancy hormone hCG (human Chorionic Gonadotrophin) and unlike traditional tests can be used in the days before your period is due.
These tests are expensive but we know that lots of you are using them. But do they always give the right result? Are the instructions clear and how much are you spending on multiple testing?
What your results revealed has led us to launch our #WaitToWee campaign – calling for a better understanding around early pregnancy tests. Read on to discover what we found out…
Are they accurate?
Early pregnancy tests claim to be able to tell if you’re pregnant days before you miss a period, with some early pregnancy tests claiming to be accurate five days before the day that your period is due. But we found that they don’t always give the right result.
- 6.5% of the 1541 early pregnancy tests taken early as marketed gave false results
- 5.4% were false negatives (you later found out that you were pregnant)
- 1.1% were false positives (you later found out that you weren’t pregnant)
Is accuracy more important than an early result?
Yes. Almost all of you told us that accuracy is the most important thing when you’re taking an early pregnancy test.
- 95% of you said that getting a result that’s accurate is most important in a pregnancy test
- 3.5%of MFMers told us that getting the result as early as possible was a priority, even if that result wasn’t accurate and the rest (1.5%) just weren’t sure
How easy are they to use properly?
We think that the instructions for early pregnancy tests aren’t clear or easy to find. It means that it’s easy to use them on the wrong day.
- 12% of pregnancy tests were taken too early – before the earliest day advertised
How much do you spend on pregnancy tests?
Most early pregnancy tests come in packs of two and the instructions advise that if you get a negative result using an early test, you should try again a few days later. But these tests aren’t cheap.
- 42% of MFMers take 2 pregnancy tests each time they test
- 35% spend between £6-£10 each time you test
- 10% of you spend up to £20 finding out if you’re pregnant and 4% spend £30