Knowing if you can trust your pregnancy and ovulation test results is frustrating and confusing. There are a number of things that affect the accuracy of your test results, from timing to evaporation lines — it can be overwhelming to keep track. But what about conditions like PCOS and endometriosis? Will taking an ovulation or pregnancy test still work if you’re affected by infertility? Let’s find out.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, or PCOS, is a very common hormonal disorder that causes you to have infrequent or prolonged menstrual cycles. Sometimes, PCOS causes fluid to build up on the ovaries which limits their production of eggs. What does this mean for pregnancy and ovulation if you have PCOS? While having PCOS doesn’t mean you don’t ovulate or that you can’t get pregnant, it can sometimes make both of these things harder.
Pregnancy tests measure a hormone called Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG), which is not usually affected by PCOS. PCOS does not directly affect your pregnancy test results however, certain infertility medications do.
Taking ovulation tests with PCOS can be tricky. Ovulation tests work by measuring the Luteinizing Hormone (LH) which is affected by PCOS. When levels of LH are high, an ovulation test will show a positive result meaning you are likely to ovulate soon. Many people with PCOS have high levels of LH, even when they’re not ovulating. This means that taking an ovulation test with PCOS might show a positive result when you’re not actually ovulating.
Endometriosis is a disorder that affects the tissue lining the uterus. Typically, natural tissue grows on the inside of your uterus and sheds once a month when menstruation happens. With endometriosis, this tissue grows outside of the uterus, sometimes causing endometriomas (cysts) to form on the ovaries.
Sometimes, endometriosis can cause ovarian cysts that interfere with ovulation as they can stop your eggs from maturing. However, this doesn’t typically give you false results on an ovulation test. One OBGYN reported that 40% of unexplained infertility comes from endometriosis, as it changes the hormonal environment and quality of the eggs. Many people with endometriosis report false negative pregnancy test results, so be sure to take more than one and confirm your test results with your primary care provider.
Uterine Fibroids, also called leiomyomas, are uterine growths that are typically noncancerous and show up during childbearing years. Uterine fibroids are fairly common and many people who have them don’t experience symptoms. The most common signs and symptoms of uterine fibroids include long menstrual periods, constipation, and pelvic pain. Uterine fibroids don’t typically prevent pregnancy but can cause complications and possibly infertility, depending on where they are located.
Uterine fibroids shouldn’t affect the accuracy of your pregnancy or ovulation test results. Uterine fibroids usually occur once you’re already pregnant because they develop as hCG develops over the course of pregnancy.
The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that controls the pituitary gland and many body functions. Hypothalamus dysfunction can be caused by a number of things, including surgery, nutrition problems, and certain genetic disorders. Dysfunction of the hypothalamus disrupts the body’s natural balance and can cause problems regulating things like sex drive, childbirth, memory, and appetite. Additionally, it can harm endocrine activity and the ovulation cycle.
Hypothalamic dysfunction can make it hard for ovulation tests to pick up the LH hormone in your urine because your brain is producing fewer hormones. Depending on the case, you may need to take more than one ovulation test (which we always recommend) to confirm your results. Hypothalamic dysfunction shouldn’t affect the accuracy of your pregnancy test results.
Trusting your test results on the first try is scary. That’s why Stix always sends our pregnancy tests in a pack of two and our ovulation tests in a pack of seven. Shop Stix for peace of mind and results you can trust.