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Should I Worry If My hCG Level is Slow Rising (Not Doubling Every 2 to 3 Days)?

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Updated July 01, 2014

Question: Should I Worry If My hCG Level is Slow Rising (Not Doubling Every 2 to 3 Days)?
Answer:

In a normal pregnancy, the level of hCG in your blood should increase significantly and ideally double in two quantitative hCG blood tests spaced over two to three days in early pregnancy.

The hCG doubling time will slow down considerably in the second half of the first trimester, however, to as long as 96 hours. The hCG level can also begin to slowly decrease starting in the second trimester.

Slower-rising hCG levels can be a warning sign of miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy. Remember, though, that hCG levels can still rise slowly in normal pregnancies (about 85% of normal pregnancies have hCG levels that double every two to three days). Falling hCG levels in the first trimester are usually a sign of miscarriage.

Remember to talk to your doctor if you are concerned about hCG levels that are not doubling. If your hCG levels seem to be a possible sign of miscarriage, your doctor should let you know.

Sources:

American Pregnancy Association, "Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG): The Pregnancy Hormone." July 2007. Accessed 17 Jan 2008.

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