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When do HCG levels drop in pregnancy?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I had my levels checked at 7w3d, and they were at 120,000. Yesterday I had some bright red spotting, and the midwife couldn't find the HB with the doppler. I went to the ER this morning (couldn't find a DR who would see me ) and they found the HB, but my HCG levels dropped to 34,000. I'm 12w1d right now.

I'm trying not to freak out, but the ER dr told me levels shouldn't drop until around 15 weeks. I'm finding information online that says they can start dropping as early as 10 weeks.

Would you be concerned about this drop?
post #2 of 16
I'm not sure about the HCG dropping that early...but by that stage in pregnancy HCG levels are not usually used to diagnose a threatened miscarriage- ultrasound is usually the standard.
how many beats per minute was the heartbeat? Did they do an ultrasound? Since you have spotting they should do an U/S, and at 12 weeks you will get a good idea of whether or not everything is okay with the baby.

Good luck!! s
post #3 of 16
To be honest, yes, I would be worried. I don't know much about hcg levels, in fact I wasn't aware they dropped at all during pregnancy, just aware they need to be high and keep rising in the beginning (I miscarried our 1st baby so I remember that much). With that said, if there's a heartbeat, that's always a great sign, but I'm not sure why the levels would drop so soon then. The bright red blood is also a red flag to me. If I were you I would get in to see someone, your midwife or an ob-gyn asap and have an ultrasound to check things out. I'm sorry to be a downer. I've been there (actually been there 3 times, 1 with a bad outcome and the other 2 are sitting next to me) and I feel for you. I'll keep you in my prayers. Hugs.
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by abigail_b View Post
I'm not sure about the HCG dropping that early...but by that stage in pregnancy HCG levels are not usually used to diagnose a threatened miscarriage- ultrasound is usually the standard.
how many beats per minute was the heartbeat? Did they do an ultrasound? Since you have spotting they should do an U/S, and at 12 weeks you will get a good idea of whether or not everything is okay with the baby.

Good luck!! s
The HB was around 140 BPM. They didn't do an ultrasound, because they picked up the heartbeat with the doppler. I'm having an ultrasound tomorrow though (not at the ER).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bridie's Mama View Post
To be honest, yes, I would be worried. I don't know much about hcg levels, in fact I wasn't aware they dropped at all during pregnancy, just aware they need to be high and keep rising in the beginning (I miscarried our 1st baby so I remember that much). With that said, if there's a heartbeat, that's always a great sign, but I'm not sure why the levels would drop so soon then. The bright red blood is also a red flag to me. If I were you I would get in to see someone, your midwife or an ob-gyn asap and have an ultrasound to check things out. I'm sorry to be a downer. I've been there (actually been there 3 times, 1 with a bad outcome and the other 2 are sitting next to me) and I feel for you. I'll keep you in my prayers. Hugs.
Yes, they do drop in pregnancy

I'm finding some really mixed information about when they drop though. The ER dr and my midwife said it's usually not until around 15-16 weeks, but other sites say 10-12 weeks.
http://babymed.com/FAQ/Content.aspx?14374
Quote:
The HCG pregnancy hormone has a wide range of normal levels in early pregnancy. HCG is the abbreviation for "Human Chorionic Gonadotropin". hCG is the "pregnancy hormone" which is being produced by the placenta as soon as implantation happens about one week after fertilization and ovulation
. hCG then continues to rise until about 10-12 weeks at which point it will stabilize or drop.
post #5 of 16
Im so sorry you are going through this. I hope everything turns out ok. I dont have much experience in this or knowledge about HCG but I couldnt read and not post anything. I look forward to reading your update tomorrow.
post #6 of 16
140 BPM is definitely encouraging. If the heartrate was slow I would be concerned. I am glad you are going in for the U/S tomorrow.
I haven't read your links- but the drop in HCG levels is often what causes the easing of horrible first trimester symptoms, so actually dropping around 12 weeks would make sense to me.

I had a first trimester loss, but at an 8 week U/S the heartbeat was slow and barely detectable and the baby was measuring 2 weeks behind...I didn't start bleeding until well after the baby had passed away.

Keep us posted!
post #7 of 16
I hope your u/s shows a perfecty baby with a perfect cervix. And hopefully the bleeding is nothing to worry about.

I don't know about HCG levels, I rarely have them taken and never paid any attention to them.
post #8 of 16
I had a similar experience when I was pregnant with DD2. I had massive bright red bleeding and immediately went to the ER. I was too early for them to find the heartbeat with a doppler and they didn't do an ultrasound either, but my cervix was closed and they said it was a good sign everything was okay. (They, the hospital, still labeled it as a "threatened miscarriage" due to the unexplained bleeding and my history of recurrent miscarriages. My OB referred to the incident as something they call "Venus Waves," which from what I remember has something to do with the placenta and it attaching to the uterus. Bleh. Preggers brain is definitely affecting me tonight!) They also drew blood to check my hcg levels. I'm not sure what they were or how they compared to others I had had done, but they were on the lowish side and the ER doctor and my OB at the time both explained to me they would start dropping towards the end of the first trimester and it was completely normal.

Please keep in mind if you've heard/seen the heartbeat, your chances of miscarriage are much smaller than if you hadn't.

I'll be keeping you and your LO in my thoughts. Hope everything goes well tomorrow.
post #9 of 16
I am so sorry you are going through this. I went through a scare like this a week and half ago and it was an awful awful feeling. I know there are not always happy endings, but as your research has shown, there are logical explanations for everything you have experienced. And you did hear a strong heartbeat, that is good news. I will be thinking of you...
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
Saw an OB this morning. They said they don't do HCG draws past 10 weeks, and I shouldn't worry about my levels dropping. We heard the heartbeat, cervix is closed, baby seems fine :
post #11 of 16
Yay!!! Awesome news!
post #12 of 16
So glad to hear everything is well! :
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Denelle View Post
Saw an OB this morning. They said they don't do HCG draws past 10 weeks, and I shouldn't worry about my levels dropping. We heard the heartbeat, cervix is closed, baby seems fine :
Yay! So happy for you!!

By the way, HCG levels do decrease (so I've read) at 9-10 weeks of pregnancy or at least the 'free beta HCG' does. (I know this because of the chromosomal screening blood tests)
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by abigail_b View Post
140 BPM is definitely encouraging. If the heartrate was slow I would be concerned. I am glad you are going in for the U/S tomorrow.
I haven't read your links- but the drop in HCG levels is often what causes the easing of horrible first trimester symptoms, so actually dropping around 12 weeks would make sense to me.

I had a first trimester loss, but at an 8 week U/S the heartbeat was slow and barely detectable and the baby was measuring 2 weeks behind...I didn't start bleeding until well after the baby had passed away.

Keep us posted!
This is what I was thinking.

Denelle, happy to hear that all is well.
post #15 of 16
So glad to hear your good news!
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bridie's Mama View Post
Yay!!! Awesome news!
:
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