Performing a Pregnancy Test Information for Patients

  • Reference Number: HEY-702/2015
  • Departments: Gynaecology


This leaflet has been produced to give you general information about performing a pregnancy test.  Most of your questions should be answered by this leaflet.  It is not intended to replace the discussion between you and your doctor but may act as a starting point for discussion.   If after reading it you have any concerns or require further explanation, please discuss this with a member of the healthcare team who has been caring for you.

How do you complete a pregnancy test?

This is the test device 

Step 1 – Remove test from packet.

Step 2 – Remove the cap and place it on the thumb grip end.

Step 3 – Hold the test by the capped Thumb Grip with the exposed Absorbent Tip pointing downwards directly into your urine stream for at least 10 seconds until it is thoroughly wet. See the illustration below:

Step 4 – After at least 10 seconds, remove the test from your urine and immediately replace the thumb grip cap back over the absorbent tip.

Step 5 – Lay the test on a flat surface with the Test and Control window facing upwards and then begin timing.

Step 6 – As the test begins to work, you may notice a light red flow moving across the Test and Control windows. Wait at least 3 minutes for the red line(s) to appear. If no red line appears, wait one minute longer. Some positive results may be seen in 1 minute or less.

Do not read the test result after 10 minutes.

How do I read the test results?

Pregnancy hormone levels present – 2 red lines in both the test window (T) and control window (C) means you may have retained products of conception. One line may be lighter than the other; they do not have to match.

No pregnancy hormone level present 1 red line in the control window (C) means that your pregnancy hormone levels are falling and the products of conception has been passed. 

Invalid Result

The result is invalid (the test has not worked) if no red line appears in the control window (C), even if a line appears in the test window (T). You should repeat the test with a new midstream urine test using a new device. 

What will happen next?

  1. If you are well and your test is negative you will be discharged.
  2. If the test remains weakly positive (faint line) we will book you in for an assessment.
  3. If you have not had any change in symptoms and the test remains strongly positive you will be asked to return to the hospital for assessment and an ultrasound scan.

When will my periods return to normal?

If your periods were regular before you got pregnant, then your periods should return to normal within 4-6 weeks. This will also depend on what type of contraception you are taking.

Useful contacts

Finally, if you wish to discuss any aspect of your care, or if you have any worries, you can contact:

Gynaecology Outpatients, Women and Children’s Hospital (01482) 607893

Information on The Pregnancy Advisory Service can be found at:

The Hull and East Riding Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare Partnership:

Family Planning Association:

British Pregnancy Advisory Service: Tel; 08457 304030

Marie Stopes Organisation: Tel: 0845 3008090

Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists:

General Advice and Consent

Most of your questions should have been answered by this leaflet, but remember that this is only a starting point for discussion with the healthcare team.

Consent to treatment

Before any doctor, nurse or therapist examines or treats you, they must seek your consent or permission. In order to make a decision, you need to have information from health professionals about the treatment or investigation which is being offered to you. You should always ask them more questions if you do not understand or if you want more information.

The information you receive should be about your condition, the alternatives available to you, and whether it carries risks as well as the benefits. What is important is that your consent is genuine or valid. That means:

  • you must be able to give your consent
  • you must be given enough information to enable you to make a decision
  • you must be acting under your own free will and not under the strong influence of another person

Information about you

We collect and use your information to provide you with care and treatment. As part of your care, information about you will be shared between members of a healthcare team, some of whom you may not meet. Your information may also be used to help train staff, to check the quality of our care, to manage and plan the health service, and to help with research. Wherever possible we use anonymous data.

We may pass on relevant information to other health organisations that provide you with care. All information is treated as strictly confidential and is not given to anyone who does not need it. If you have any concerns please ask your doctor, or the person caring for you.

Under the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018 we are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any information we hold about you. For further information visit the following page: Confidential Information about You.

If you or your carer needs information about your health and wellbeing and about your care and treatment in a different format, such as large print, braille or audio, due to disability, impairment or sensory loss, please advise a member of staff and this can be arranged.