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Can Depo Provera Affect Home Pregnancy Tests?

Most of the time, medications will not affect the result of pregnancy tests. Most common prescription medications, such as antibiotics or birth control pills, should not interfere with the accuracy of these tests. However, there are some medications that are known to affect home pregnancy tests. Typically, these medications are fertility medications that contain the pregnancy hormone hCG (human Chorionic Gonadotropin), which is the hormone that pregnancy tests measure to determine whether or not you are pregnant. Depo Provera does not contain hCG, and therefore is not believed to affect home pregnancy tests.

Before explaining any further about Depo Provera and its affect on home pregnancy tests, it is important to understand exactly how home pregnancy tests work. As noted above, hope pregnancy tests measure hCG. For a pregnancy test to show a positive result, your body must be producing a level of hCG that the test can detect. Not all pregnancy tests are the same, however. Some tests are more sensitive than others and will show a positive result earlier than tests that are less sensitive. The box that the test came in should indicate somewhere what its sensitivity is. Sensitivity is measured in IU/L, which stands for milliInternational Units per Liter. A very sensitive test may have a sensitivity of 20 IU/L, whereas a test that is not as sensitive might have a sensitivity of 50 IU/L.

Because of the sensitivity issue, the timing of your home pregnancy test can affect its results. A very sensitive test may be able to produce a positive result as little as 7 days after ovulation. Implantation must occur before hCG is produced, and implantation will generally take place 6-12 days after ovulation. Thus, it makes sense to try to wait at least 12 days after ovulation to test for a reliable result. If you cannot wait that long and have other symptoms of pregnancy, you might use a test that is higher in sensitivity, but keep in mind that even if the result is negative you may still be pregnant, but just not implanted.

There are some other things that can affect the results of a home pregnancy test. You may have had a chemical pregnancy, for example, which would indicate that you were pregnant one day and not pregnant a few days later. Or, you might experience something known as evaporation lines, in which the results of the home pregnancy test is affected by the urine stream crossing the test and then leaving a mark on the results area.

Finally, the medications that might affect home pregnancy tests will, as has been discussed, contain hCG. While Depo Provera will not affect your home pregnancy tests, fertility medications such as Profasi, Pregnyl, and Novarel might if you take the home pregnancy test within a couple of weeks of getting the shot.

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Last modified: February 10, 2013

The information provided here should not be considered medical advice. It is based on the average experience of women trying to conceive and may not be what you may be experiencing. It's not meant to be a replacement for any advice you may receive from your doctor. If you have any concerns about your cycle or our ability to get pregnant, we advise you to contact your doctor.