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Dr. Pfeiffer
Dr. Pfeiffer, Doctor
Category: OB GYN
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Experience:  Ob/Gyn Doctor
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What are pregnancy symptoms?

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I am 2-3 days late for my period and wondering if I am pregnant. Date of LMP was April 14th and my husband and I use the withdrawal method, but did have a lot of intercourse around the time I would have been most fertile (April 22nd-29th). I'm usually very regular having start dates for my last several periods like clockwork Dec 10th, Jan, Feb 10th, March 9th and April 14th).
On May 2nd, I felt really unusual and lots of symptoms, almost like PMS (bloating and cramps) but no blood/pinkish discharge. I did notice a change in my discharge (increase, amount and texture). I also became really emotional around this time (which isn't usual for me around periods). I also felt something like bubbles or something like gas in my uterus much that evening. Since I have been having some light cramps off/on but no blood or beginning showings of blood, as I tend to get usually. Also breast soreness and sudden fatigue at times of day not typical, and tonight, an unusual inability to sleep. Combined with just a "feeling" that I am pregnant, I know that sounds sort of silly.
I took pregnancy tests on May 12th and May 14th both negative. I am wondering if I am still possibly pregnant and when I can rely accurately on home test, or if I should go and get bloodwork done so it is more conclusive?
Any direction/impressions would be helpful, as I am excitedly wondering and just wanting to know when I can be sure. Thanks in advance for the help.

Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: OB GYN
Expert:  Dr. Su S replied 4 years ago.

When you have breast tenderness, & other symptoms & late in period, pregnancy is possible. Most home pregnancy test usually gives positive results on the day of scheduled period or even earlier it can be positive. Result is reliable after 1 week of missed period. Sometimes it takes 2 weeks or more if the hormone in the urine is low. Otherwise blood tests are more sensitive & accurate. It will give confirmatory results earlier.

You can wait a few days to take a repeat home pregnancy test. If it is negative take a consultation of doctor for a blood pregnancy test for confirmatory result.

If you have any query, please feel free to ask. It will be my privilege to assist you.


Expert:  Dr. Pfeiffer replied 4 years ago.

So the basic answer to your question is home pregnancy tests are most reliable at 7 days after a missed period. So, based upon that you are a bit early to have a conclusive negative test. Positive tests can surface sooner than that, but for a negative test to be reliable - 7 days. A blood pregnancy test would be accurate now, however, so if you didn't want to wait another 4 or 5 days you could explore that avenue.

Now, it is not uncommon for a woman to be late or even miss a period - a woman's hormonal system is very sensitive and can easily be disrupted by stress, anxiety, hormonal imbalance, illness, thyroid problems, medications...etc.

In other words, pregnancy is not the only reason to be late or miss a period. Additionally, when this happens (and pregnancy is not the culprit) there is a hormonal imbalance to some degree that causes the other symptoms - such as moodiness, breast tenderness, bloating, etc.

So in closing - it's too early to say you are not pregnant. You need to repeat a home pregnancy test in 4 or 5 days with the first void of the day as that's when the pregnancy hormone is most concentrated and will yield the best results. If it's positive, you are pregnant. If it's negative I'm comfortable saying you are not pregnant and this is likely just a hormonal imbalance from one of the things I mentioned previously. Typically, this resolves on its own with time and menstruation begins on its own. If, however, you miss 3 periods in a row you should talk with your doctor about medication to start your period.

Dr. Pfeiffer, Doctor
Category: OB GYN
Satisfied Customers: 5986
Experience: Ob/Gyn Doctor
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