Beta HCG stands for Beta Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. Beta HCG is a hormone produced during pregnancy. It is usually detected in the blood. Beta HCG test is used to identify pregnancy. Quantitative beta HCG test is useful in many situations. It measures the amount of hormones in the blood.
TEST RESULTS EXPLAINED:
* Qualitative Beta HCG :
1. A positive beta HCG indicates pregnancy.
2. A negative beta HCG suggest that the woman is not pregnant.
* Quantitative Beta HCG:
1. It indicates the measured concentration of the hormones.
2. When the level is above 1500 units, the fetus is visible on a transvaginal ultrasound scan.
3. When the level is higher than 4000 units, the fetus is visible on a transabdominal ultrasound scan.
The placenta develops HCG during pregnancy. Beta HCG test is performed to:
1. Confirm pregnancy.
2. Determine the age of the fetus(approx).
3. Screening for down syndrome.
4. Diagnose a miscarriage.
5. Diagnose ectopic pregnancy.
Sometimes, it is also used to screen for pregnancy before you take specific medical treatments like an x-ray. It can harm a developing baby. If the beta HCG test is positive, doctors ensure that those medical treatments can’t hurt the fetus. Beta HCG is also used to diagnose certain types of cancer.
List of cancers that cause a higher level of HCG are:
1. Lung cancer
2. Breast cancer
3. Ovarian cancer
4. Uterus cancer
In men, Beta HCG test is performed to detect testicular cancer. Normal HCG level in a nonpregnant woman is 10.0 mIU/mL. Lower HCG level indicates a possible miscarriage, miscalculation of pregnancy dating, ectopic pregnancy etc. higher level of HCG indicates a multiple pregnancy (twins or triplets), a molar pregnancy, etc.
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