Pregnancy test showed 2 stripes, but one of them is faint: Am I pregnant?

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So you took a pregnancy test and the faded second line on it has left you scratching your head? Faint lines on pregnancy tests are not uncommon and may happen due to a number of reasons. 


Quick tips on what to do after your pregnancy test has shown you a faded second line: 


1. Keep in mind that in any case, a faint line is likely to indicate a positive result for pregnancy, unless your doctor has proven otherwise. 


Faint lines can mean that you’re pregnant, but there is a low level of pregnancy hormone in your urine because you took the test too early. Pregnancy hormone is human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), which is produced in your body as soon as you get pregnant (after egg implantation). As your pregnancy progresses, the hormone level increases. If hCG is present in your urine, you'll have a positive test result. The more hCG in your body, the more visible the positive line will be on a home test.


What to do? Retake the test in 2-3 days.
If the line is vivid, you are pregnant. See your doctor for further information. 

If the line is still faded, retake the test in a day and consult your ob-gyn to find out the reason. 


2. You may also not be pregnant and the faded line could be an evaporation line. 

Sometimes, tests can display evaporation lines which might look like a positive line. It shows up in the results window as urine evaporates from the stick. So how do you know if it is a second positive pregnancy line or an evaporation line? Evaporation lines appear several minutes after the recommended time for checking the test results. 


What to do? Retake the test in 2-3 days. Carefully follow the instructions of the home pregnancy test to avoid misleading information. Your test results will be ready within three to five minutes, depending on the manufacturer.


3. If your test has a faint line and you experience vaginal spotting. 


What to do? Seek medical advice

If the bleeding is light or similar to a period, call your doctor. 

If the bleeding is very heavy, for example, more than a pad or tampon in an hour, go to the emergency room immediately for a doctor to do an evaluation.


Keep in mind that a faint line can also be caused by the following: 

It could be a sign of early miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy.

You could be taking fertility meds that artificially raise the levels of hCG in your system.

In the case of recent abortion or miscarriage, the woman’s body can still have hCG in the system, so the result of the test can be misleading.

You’ve recently given birth and the hCG hasn’t completely left your system.

If you are concerned about your results, consult your ob-gyn to discover what is actually going on.

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