Is it Possible to be Pregnant if the Pregnancy Test is Negative?

Can you still be pregnant if the pregnancy test is negative?

When you’re trying to get pregnant, one of the most frustrating things is to take one pregnancy test after another and to have them all come back negative. However, did you know that pregnancy tests can show a negative result but you might in fact be pregnant? This article is intended to discuss why this can occur to provide you with more information if you ever find yourself in this situation.

However, if you would like to reduce the likelihood of this happening, it is important that you allow your period to occur before taking a pregnancy test. This gives your body a chance to secrete high enough concentrations of human chorionic gonadotropin, or hCG, to ensure that even the least sensitive pregnancy tests can accurately tell you whether or not conception has occurred.

Reasons Why a False Negative Pregnancy Test Might Occur

If you don’t already know, a false pregnancy test is when you take a pregnancy test and it comes back with a negative result when you actually are pregnant. This can confuse some women. However, there are a few well-known reasons why false negative pregnancy tests can occur:

  • Taking a Pregnancy Test Too Early – If you haven’t calculated your time of ovulation properly, if an implantation occurred later than you might have thought, or if you took a pregnancy test before your period is due, you might end up with a false negative test. Often, having too low of a concentration of hCG in your body before taking the pregnancy test is one of the primary reasons why a test will come back negative even if you are pregnant. Pay attention to the sensitivity of the pregnancy test that you’re using, especially if you’re taking the test before your missed period. Tests that only require an hCG concentration of 25 mIU can be used 4 to 5 days before a period is due whereas others might not be able to detect pregnancy until after your period has passed. The best precaution that you can take to ensure your result is accurate is to wait until after your period to take a pregnancy test, regardless of the sensitivity of the test that you choose to use.
  • Improper Technique – Errors in technique while testing can be another common cause of false negative results. If you didn’t dip the stick according to the instructions, or if you used a midstream test and didn’t get the test saturated enough, you might have used improper technique while taking the test.
  • Delayed Reaction Time – When it comes to pregnancy tests, timing is everything. Each pregnancy test that you purchase will have a specific reaction time that you must adhere to because if you don’t, your results will be inaccurate. As a result, you might have false negative results even if you are pregnant.

At-home pregnancy tests can be a challenge. If you take a test and get a negative result, it’s best to wait a few days before taking a test again. Generally, a negative result can mean three things. Specifically, it can mean that you aren’t pregnant, you took the pregnancy test too early, or you took the test incorrectly. If you’ve received mixed results after taking multiple tests, the best way to get an accurate answer is to visit your doctor for a blood pregnancy test.

  • shannon

    Hi i had a 2 day period on the 20th of September i done 4 test two where strip ones and came positive 2 where asda ones and was negative i am due on in a few days but no period symptoms witch is unusual for me could i be pregnant or is it stress related?

  • RR Franz

    You can be pregnant and still have a negative result : there is another reason that you could be coming up negative. There are four types of pregnancy hormone the human body produces not just one. The test used today test only for type A hCG, (the most common in humans in early pregnancy). Yet there are three other types not tested for (all four types are usually produced in the third trimester) …The reason you would still be having periods is because hCG needs to be in enough amounts to trigger the pituitary gland to stop the period.
    If you believe yourself to be pregnant even when having periods (because other pregnancy symptoms appear) take care of yourself as if pregnant . Take herb supplement to decrease mentreal flow for at least 5 months , by then you should be able to know weather you are pregnant for sure …Advice from a mom of six (with period, early negative until after 5 months babies)

  • RR Franz

    It could be both . If some of the test came back positive you do have hCG in your urine… stress can also make you late. I would go with the positve result though…. hCG is only in the body when pregnant > unless you are taking hCG suppliments for weight loss

  • Gaby

    hi I haven’t had a period in 3 months I’ve took multiple of tests and they have all came out to be negative wat should I do ?

  • shiela

    i’am delayed for a i decide to use a pt kit but the result is negative but i feel that i’am pregnant what should i do?

  • Maggie

    My husband and I had been using the ovulation sticks which showed I was ovulating Feb 2-4 my period was supposed to start on Feb 10th but did not start until Feb 24th , I started spotting, and had a medium to light period I usally have a very heavy one.. I have taken several pg test but all have come back negative, is it possible I am/was pregnant?

  • s

    This also does not discuss producing false-negatives. When my mother was pregnant with me, she had periods until she was nearly 5 months along with no signs or symptoms. With my sister, she thought she was pregnant and took test after test and all showed negative until she ended in the hospital for an infection and then they told her at 4 months along! You can never be 100% sure with at home testing!

  • Joy

    Hi everyone, I had a 4 day period this past month and I have been having many symptoms of pregnancy. I already have a 21 month old daughter so I am aware of the symptoms that occur. I am getting negative tests but I didn’t miss a period yet for the next month because I am not due for it yet. I have just been feeling a lot of symptoms but I may be testing at the wrong time. I am going to see if I get my period on June 4th when it’s due and then If not I will take another pregnancy test.c

  • RN

    That’s not the correct time period for conception. If you have a 28-day cycle, you ovulate 14 days after the start of your last period.

  • bryanna

    Hi last month i was pregnant. but i had a miscarriage. this month i am 11 days late and feel pregnant again but I’ve taken four tests all saying negative. could i still be pregnant?

  • Vickie B.

    If the tests keep showing negatives, you probably are not pregnant. As you had a miscarriage, it could be that your body is just trying to regain it’s hormonal balance. This could account for your very late period. If you doubt, you can always go and see your doctor to discuss your concerns.

  • jhen

    I’m delayed for 2,months and I took a pt but it shows negative.. My boobs hurt I felt I’m pregnant.. Is it possible to be pregnant even if the pt keep showing negative? Thanks

  • Jewelz

    OMG reading your post. Im so nervous

  • Jewelz

    OMG reading your post. Im so nervous

  • Angie

    Me and my boyfriend had sex about a month ago. A couple weeks passed and my boobs were very sore I couldn’t even sleep on my stomach. I was having cramps and having nausea on and off. It stopped and I started my period a week earlier than usual. I took a test while on period it came out negative . I’m still having nausea here and there. I can’t throw up ! Can I be pregnant ? Oh ya I feel like I’m getting bigger on my stomach . My diet hasn’t changed so I don’t know .

  • naomi

    well I have tooken sseveral test .. they tell always tell me I am not .. but I am having back pains in the lower part of my spin and throwing up ,feeling sick and headaches, and stomach cramps… I have a iud as my birthcontrol.. could I still be pregnant.. ??????

  • Vickie B.

    The IUD is usually a very reliable form of birth control. If you keep having negative tests, you may want to visit your doctor to find out what is going on in your body that is causing the symptoms you are having.

  • Melissa James Black

    Hi. I have had the IUD Mirena since Nov 2013. It has been wonderful and I got it because I was having heavy, painful cycles. I haven’t had a cycle since Jan of this year. Plus I have had gastric bypass surgery 2 and a half years ago and Ive lost over 100 pounds and we were waiting til after the first of the year to try the whole baby thing until after I talk with my doctor. But for the past 2 months I have been feeling strange. It has started with mood swings that usually lasted one week out of every month to now it has been consistant for the past 2 maybe 3 months. For the past month I have been feeling movement. It was sporadic at first that I dismissed as a spasm and now has been a daily thing for the past week and I feel it several times a day. Its little thumps and like this roll. Ive taken 2 pregnancy tests and both have come back negative. I feel this sort of bloated or fullness feeling right in the center of my abdomen like there’s a small ball in there and it all feels tight. I feel like Ive gained weight but not because of my eating habits. Now I have this fatigue around early afternoon that hits me like a ton of bricks. Ive never been pregnant before and Im 38 so Im clueless. I do have an apt next week. Just wondering can the mirena affect a pregnancy test?

  • Vickie B.

    An iud will not affect the results of a pregnancy test. If you feel that you are pregnant, you need to see a doctor right away though because an iud will interfere with the fetuses growth. It’s not very likely that you are pregnant, but you might want to visit your doctor for a checkup to find out why you are feeling the sensations that you are.

  • Melissa James Black

    I do have an apt for this coming Thurs. It just doesn’t make sense how that my stomach is pooching out practically overnight and that Im feeling these movements and that they have been getting stronger and more frequent. Im not in any pain so it is a bit of a mystery. I have read many stories of women who were pregnant on Mirena and had negative pregnancy tests. So I guess I wont get any real answers until I see my doctor. Just all very weird.

  • Tabitha Zuver

    Is it possible to get pregnant only on BC? The OBG-N told me that when he put me on BC and I’m still confused by it

  • Shyla Braye

    I’m going through the same thing. Except me and my boyfriend had sex 3 months ago and nothing about the way I’m eating has changed and it looks like I’m starting to show already but I keep getting negative tests , my breasts hurt a lot and I feel sick but can’t throw up

  • Shyla Braye

    I thought I had a miscarriage last month.. I am now starting to show but still getting negative tests

  • Shyla Braye

    Hi , I think I might be 3 months pregnant and starting to show but I keep getting negative tests could I be pregnant? This would be my first baby as I am only 16. I don’t really have any symptoms. Could I be pregnang?

  • Amanda Weldon

    So I haven’t had a period for almost going on the past 3 months, I feel kicking and rolling and am currently on methadone I’ve had two daughters before and never got positive tests until six months could this be the reason and could there really be a little one inside me. Please help?

  • Vickie B.

    If you have that type of history, you really need to go to your doctor and have him to an ultrasound. You need to make sure that methadone is safe to take while pregnant.

  • Vickie B.

    If you keep having negative tests, you probably are not pregnant. But if you really think you are, you need to go to a clinic and see what they say.

  • Vickie B.

    It’s not likely but it is possible. No form of contraception is 100%. The only thing that will make sure you don’t get pregnant is abstinence.

  • Seema

    Hi.. I had all the symptoms of pregnancy last month..but somehow got my periods which lasted for 2 days and prior to my periods..I had this pinkish brownish I waited for this month..just to confirm things..this month also have experienced the same spotting which lasted for an hour or so n I have missed my periods..took the test which turned out to be there any chance of me pregnant or should I consult a doc

  • Seema

    Hi.. I had all the symptoms of pregnancy but somehow got my periods last month which lasted for 2 days n prior to my periods had experienced some pinkish brownish spotting so thought I might not b pregnant but this month had again experienced the same spotting which lasted for an hour or so n have missed my period..Took a test which turned out to be there any chances of me pregnant or should I consult a doc?

  • bryanna

    I’m three weeks late. I’ve been pregnant before but had a miscarriage I’ve only had one period since the miscarriage and my breast hurt very badly and from time to time I feel sick but am also hungry a lot. I’ve taken four pregnancy tests but they are all negative. Could I still be pregnant?

  • Natasha

    Ok I’ve just had my implant taken out after 3 has it was about to expire,for the pass 2 weeks I have been eating like a manic and my belly has expanded like when u pregnant with both my children,I’m 29 and have 2 kids,I’ve been to the gp and clinic and all test have come back negative,which is confusing because my belly has never been like this except when I was pregnant and I’ve always been thin even whist pregnant,had blood test today to see if I am as they don’t understand why my belly looks pregnant,could I possibly be having a ectopic pregnancy?

  • hay93

    I had a late period on 31st august and tests are saying negative. How much longer should I wait to try test again?. I’ve been a little moody and really tired lately sleeping mostly all day. Could I be pregnant ?

  • chels

    I’m suppose to start my period today but have not. i may be stressing to much about it i took a hpt this morning it was negative. i was pregnant before and felt this same way. boobs are extremely sore and numb and I’m hungry and sleeping a lot. coulf i have taken test to.early what should i do?

  • Vickie B.

    You really should see your doctor if your cycle has changed so drastically and the tests are coming back not pregnant.

  • Vickie B.

    Well, if you haven’t had a period, then the possibility that you are pregnant is there even if the tests come back negative. It could also be that your body is trying to regain hormonal balance after your miscarriage and things are just a bit out of whack at the moment. If you are concerned, you may want to contact your doctor.

  • Vickie B.

    It could just be your body’s reaction to trying to regain it’s normal hormonal balance after removing the birth control. What did your doctor say?

  • Vickie B.

    If you had a period, but later than normal, it could be that you had a very early miscarriage. The symptoms you are having could be your body trying to clear the hormones that had built up before your period arrived.

  • Vickie B.

    It’s possible that you took the test too early, though testing the day you are supposed to start your period usually gives accurate results. It could be that you just have a hormonal imbalance that is causing you to feel odd.

  • Samii

    Hi, I think I may be pregnant. For the past two Sundays I’ve been getting nauseous, irregular bowel movements and throwing up. Lasts around 6 hours, during this time the only thing that gives me a break from being sick on the 6 hours is when I have a shower and let the water run over my belly.. Afterwards I feel fine. I’ve put on weight. My stomach is getting rounder (I usually have a very flat tight stomach). I’ve been getting lower abdominal cramps every so often. I noticed these symptoms two months ago and have had unusual periods since. I have gone to the doctors and they think I’m pregnant but all the urine tests come back negative. Could I still be pregnant?

  • Vickie B.

    It’s possible but the only way to tell now if the pregnancy tests keep coming back negative is to have your doctor give you an ultrasound to confirm,.

  • debbie

    My daughter had artificial insemination back in July she has had a light period since even though they said at the clinic it would be heavy she has done 2 clear blue tests both negative but she has been sick and is constantly nauseous and keeps going to the loo even in the night what do we think?

  • Vickie B.

    It sounds like something may be going on, but it would be best to contact the doctors who did the artificial insemination to find out what they think.

  • Me

    I know this is weird but I am really worried. So, for about last 2months I am feeling really tired and sleepy. Last month I got my period few days earlier which NEVER happened before (I always get my period 3-4days later). It was shorter than usual (2-3days) and I had less blood than usual. Week later I started feeling nauseous. I would wake up in the middle of the night nauseous having mild chills all over my body. Than I started feeling not tired and sleepy but EXHAUSTED! (I was on a long trip with my fiance so I thought I was just being tired of driving and walking all day long). But every day since then I felt the same. I love eating but this time I had some kind of aversion to food which is so unusual for me. I was hungry all the time but I lost my appetite probably because I was nauseous and few times I had a strong urge to threw up that I could barely stand that. I had to pee all the time. My breast were really sore. A lot of people thought I was pregnant. I had my nose bleeding and I was feeling like I am sick, but I wasn’t. My discharge wasn’t like usual, I had it more than regularly. When we came back from the trip I was feeling dizzy and threw up few times. And then I got my period and this time it was more unusual than last time. I got it earlier than usual, first it was pinkish, it wasn’t like blood at all, then next day it was lighter red than usual and I had just one or two pads all day long(usually I change at least 6 pads). Next day it was similar like the first day. And I wasn’t in any pain like I am regularly. But I was sure I wasn’t pregnant since I got period, so I went to take blood test to see If everything is ok with me because my doctor thought I was anemic but my blood results were excellent! Then I took pregnancy test in the afternoon and it was negative. I probably wouldn’t think that I am pregnant anymore, but I still feel really tired and nauseous, I have to pee every second, my back hearts, I am hungry all the time and I still cannot sleep well, I even woke up once feeling nauseous and for the past 5-6days I have constipation and sometimes diarrhea. Is there any possible way that I might be pregnant since I have red that a lot of women had similar experiences like I did and they ended up being pregnant. Not to mention mood swings, I cry like a baby, I am really nervous and sometimes anxious and all the others symptoms of pregnancy except that I got really unusual period and urine test was negative. Since I got my period I haven’t talked to my doctor about a possibility of pregnancy and she said I am just tired because of the trip. Please let me know what you think.

  • monika

    5 days late still no period tests keeps saying negatives can I still be with child or am I going to get my period?

  • Me

    So what happened?

  • Me

    So did you found out?

  • Me

    I am so interesting what happened next.. Are you really pregnant?

  • Vickie B.

    I think you really need to address all your symptoms with your doctor. They did blood work, but did they test you for a uti? A lot of the symptoms you are having are similar to those that you could have with a uti.

  • Vickie B.

    That’s hard to say. There are lots of reasons you might have a late period. Until you finally start your period, you may want to treat your self as if you are pregnant just in case.

  • Neelam

    i’ve missed mine since one month now and all test are coming negative.. im confused as i get my period every month..but missed my period last month..

  • Cheyenne

    I took a test and it was a very faint line but positive and than I decided to take two more the next week and they were negative and I’ve missed my period what should I do

  • riya

    I have pcod and my period often miss for 2-3 months. I got my last period in july and not yet again. But this time i am having some indications like that of pregnancy. Can i do test now for any positive results? I mean after probable 3 months?

  • Vickie B.

    Well, you can try, but due to the fact that you don’t have regular cycles, it is hard to pinpoint when you ovulated. If you are having pregnancy like symptoms, I’d say test. If you get a negative, get in touch with your doctor to see if they can figure out why you are having the symptoms that you are.

  • sky

    Can any help I had sex the start Aug got a period for 3 days last week in Aug done 2 test said negative and hospital done one as well that was negative no period since Aug but I only found out I’ve high grade abnormal cells with lower back and pelvic pain could this be why I’m not getting a period

  • Vickie B.

    I’m not sure what you mean by “I’ve high grade abnormal cells” Does that mean you have some sort of infection? If so, then that could account for you missing your period.

  • klove

    I was she to get my depo shot the end of July. I didn’t get it. It’s now mid to end October and I still haven’t had a period. I don’t feel pregnant and my husband thinks I am. I’ve taken quite a few hpt and they’re all negative. However,I have gained weight, boobies are tender and a little bigger, tired a lot, hungry all the time. Not she if he’s right or if my af is on its way. Waiting is hard. What do you think?

  • Vickie B.

    Pregnancy is always possible if you are having unprotected sex. You might want to visit your doctor to find out why your periods have not returned. If you aren’t pregnant, it sounds like your body has a major hormonal imbalance happening.

  • Sam

    Did you take blood tests with negative results before reaching five months, or just HPTs?

  • kedra

    I had been on depo since may and had a due date on august 27 and missed my shot, then on October 28 I started spotting brown blood then October 31 it because red , but stop on November 2, 2014, could I be pregnant?

  • Vickie B.

    You have too many variables to consider to make a good guess. When was your period due? Were you spotting when your period should have been there? Did you have unprotected sex when you were ovulating? Did you take a pregnancy test? Basically, it’s possible but without all the details, it isn’t possible to guess. It could be that your body is trying to regain it’s hormonal balance and you had breakthrough bleeding due to that.

  • dakota

    I haven’t had a period for 3 months now had spotting back in august and that’s it had blood and urine done both come back negative im only 20 and do have a one year old it feels like I can feel movements and my stomach is getting harder dr said they don’t investigate till its been a year so confused right now any solutions??

  • dakota

    I haven’t had a period for 3 months now I am 20 with a 1 year old, have had urine and blood tests both come back neg. I can feel movements and a lot of pressure down there it feels like it did when I was pregnant with my son dr said they don’t investigate until I haven’t ad a period for a year really confused and need solutions please?

  • jz

    I have been having pregnancy symptoms for a few months now. Excessive weight gain (which Ive always struggled to gain weight), tender breasts, exhaustion, nausea, sensitive to smells, food cravings, cramping at random times etc.. My stomach looks like I could be pregnant and my boobs wont stop growing. Im 24years old. I’ve been on birth control, though Ive missed a day or two in prior months so its possible I am pregnant. However I still get a period each month, its just much lighter the past few months and I havent had as much cramping during and it isnt as painful of cramping. The blood is usually a brownish color, occasionally light pink. Im still taking birth control. Any test I take is negative. I’m starting to feel completely crazy. Any advice?

  • jz

    oh, and add in an INSANE amount of heartburn

  • Vickie B.

    If you have a history of pregnancy tests not working, then you might want to try and convince your doctor to give you an ultrasound, Sounds like you might need to find a new doctor if your doctor will not listen to you.

  • Vickie B.

    You might want to talk to your doctor about your symptoms. They do sound like pregnancy ones, but it could be that your body isn’t handling the hormonal birth control very well.

  • MSK

    Hey all. Got a lot on my mind. I had my LMP on 8th August, the second one after the birth if my son who was born 8 July last year. I started feeling sick in September and was diagnosed with diabetes. Started off with the meds but was still feeling funny, nauseous and light headed. I did a couple of test in Sept one had a faint +ve line and the other was -ve. Symptoms persisted and I did some more last week(November), one negative, the other with a faint +ve lie, and the last definitely positive. Interestingly, my sugar level is now normal and I am not on any medication,and even the nausea is subsiding. I cant get to the hospital now as I am in a quarantined area because of Ebola but I just need to know how far gone and if I should ask for any medication now. I have headache most of the time and feel so tired. Also was my diabetes gestational or what as even though I am not taking any medication it is within normal levels for more than a month now.

  • Jewels

    I haven’t had a period in 4months and my blood work and stuff are negative and people say I’m getting bigger I don’t know…

  • Vickie B.

    Wow, you have a lot going on there! I would talk to the doctors that are in the quarantine area to find out what they think about medications and to see if they can help you figure out how far along you might be.

  • Katie May

    I’m irregular and always have been ive been on bc for 5 yrs and eventually this yr it was regular. For 3 straight months I was having a normal 30 day cycle. In October I was ovulating my period ended Sept 19 but I started work. I spotted a little bit thought my period had started but nope false alarm. I have taken so many tests especially after my mother in law asked me after I was pregnant bc I had been so tired and emotional. I mean I was passing out in the car and slept from 7:30pm-5:30pm the next day which is abnormal for me. Ive gained weight and even started craving pickles and chocolate but im weird like that too. I have breast tenderness and im super moody like yesterday I started bawling my eyes out for no reason just in the middle of dancing with my husband. Im so worried. Any opinions? Hopefully its not a false pregnancy. Ive missed my period for 2 months already.

  • sharon

    I missed my period on the 18 and i take the test 3 days later… first it came postive the next day it was negative and i still didn’t have my period…

Last modified: November 22, 2014

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