Mothering Forums

Mothering Forums (
-   I'm Pregnant (
-   -   18 DPO Low HCG -- Am I Doomed? (

oasis84 03-24-2013 03:45 AM

Hi Ladies,


So I tested BFN at 12 DPO, thought for sure I was out until AF didn't arrive, tested again evening of 16 DPO and got a positive. Tested again 17 DPO with a FRER and some internet cheapies and all positive -- although the lines are definitely not as dark as the control line. Tested again this a.m. at 18 DPO and the line got darker than yesterday but it still wasn't as dark as control line.


18 DPO at about 8:30 a.m. I had a beta HCG and a progesterone test. Beta HCG came back at 122 (progesterone ok at 42). It's possible I miscalculated my O date and I'm not 18 DPO but since I temp I doubt this is the case and if I'm off it's only by one or two days. I know this is still in the "normal" range of HCG but it's verrrry low for the normal range (which I've seen reported as 70-758+) and I haven't been able to find anyone else (online anyway) the reported numbers so low and went on to have a successful pregnancy. I go back in 48 hours to check for doubling but in the meantime I'm going crazy. My heart is telling me this is not a viable pregnancy and I should prepare for the worst... 


Any thoughts, experience, feedback appreciated!



oasis84 03-24-2013 05:43 AM


xiola 03-24-2013 02:03 PM

Oasis I am sending you so much love! I have no experience with beta testing but I wanted to let y know aim thinking of you and sending you lots of sticky vibes! 

oliversmommy329 03-24-2013 02:39 PM

It's hard to tell if it is a viable pregnancy from a single blood test. I know it's torture but you will have to wait for the 48hr to have a better idea. FWIW my test lines didn't get dark for a few weeks. It's hard for a urine test to show "how" pregnant you are because other variables can affect how much HCG comes out in your urine. Hope you get some good news!

oliversmommy329 03-24-2013 02:44 PM

Also, just wanted to add... A HCG of 122 is good if you got a late bfp if you think about it. If you're doubling every 48 hours that puts you around 60 at 16dpo and 30 at 14dpo and only 15 at 12dpo which makes sense because you got a negative at 12dpo. Normal implantation can occur between 6 and 12 dpo so that coincides with implantation around day 10 which is in the normal range. Just throwing that out there.

oasis84 03-24-2013 08:52 PM

Thanks oliversmommy and xiola -- I'll remain hopeful but wait and see. I'll definitely come back and update for any moms to be out there who find themselves In a similar situation!

jenger 03-25-2013 01:20 PM

I have a theory that my HCG levels are just on the lower end - I have tested fairly late, and this pregnancy started with an HCG of 25!  But it kept doubling... There is a range for a reason - the important part is the doubling...

Also, I still take wondfros (or internet cheapies), as I have them - and sometimes they are light - it seems to depend more on the time of day as well as the concentration of my pee.

EA77 03-25-2013 10:53 PM

You're in the normal range, possibly had late implantation, and aren't cramping or bleeding, so I think you've got good reason to be hopeful for a good doubling time on your next HCG test (when is that happening?). I know it's hard not to worry, but remember that today, you're pregnant. Please do let us know how your next test goes. Sending sticky vibes!

oasis84 03-26-2013 04:34 AM

Thanks for all the replies, ladies. 


To update everyone (and anyone else who might be listening out there in internet land -- or will be sometime in the future bc I know I've spent countless amounts of time pouring over posts women made three or more years ago!): I went in for my second HCG beta this a.m. (48 hours after my first) and I'm not exactly doubling. I went from 122 to 205. Given that I *think* I'm 20 DPO based on temping/OPKs I'm pretty discouraged by this. The number is very low in general for that far along and I'm not doubling. 

I know based on the anecdotal evidence this could turn out to be a viable pregnancy (especially if I implanted late or somehow miscalculated O date) but I also know it's possible I'll miscarry or it'll be an ectopic. And I don't have a good feeling about it. No matter how much I want this to be our baby, my intuition is that it's not meant to be (or maybe this is my defense mechanism??). In any case the ambiguity is killing me so I'm hoping for a definitive answer one way or the other soon. 
My doc seems totally unconcerned, says it's good news and that pregnancy is progressing. She wants to see me back in 10 days for a prenatal appointment but I know I can't wait that long so will probably go in for another HCG two days from now. 
I just really wanted to see a number that would give me some confidence and this definitely doesn't do that. I almost want to ask them to re-test haha. I'm having majorly sore BBs, exhaustion (like going to bed at 9pm) and light cramping off and on (I've had this since a couple of days before I tested positive so I don't think it's anything related to a MC). So there are still symptoms, which is a good sign. 
Am I the only one who thinks TTC and the early stages of pregnancy feels something like walking through a field of land mines!??! It's impossible to quell my anxieties about all the different things that might pop up and go wrong. My mother told me it was better back when she was pregnant with my sister and me bc women didn't have any of these tests. They just missed a period, took a pregnancy test and that was that. They were pregnant until they either weren't any more or delivered a baby. Miscarriages were unexpected but at least you were able to enjoy the time you had... At this point I feel like I'm only halfway pregnant!

jenger 03-26-2013 10:00 AM

Originally Posted by oasis84 View Post

Am I the only one who thinks TTC and the early stages of pregnancy feels something like walking through a field of land mines!??! It's impossible to quell my anxieties about all the different things that might pop up and go wrong. My mother told me it was better back when she was pregnant with my sister and me bc women didn't have any of these tests. They just missed a period, took a pregnancy test and that was that. They were pregnant until they either weren't any more or delivered a baby. Miscarriages were unexpected but at least you were able to enjoy the time you had... At this point I feel like I'm only halfway pregnant!


This is exactly how I felt for the first 2-3 weeks of my pregnancy - I, too, had low HCG for my dates (I was wrong - I was trying to stop trying, so I missed O) and a bleed a bit, and my numbers weren't exactly reassuring. 


Do what you need to do to protect your heart, that's what I think.  My husband, on the other hand, might say what he said to me... you are pregnant today - enjoy that!  (I could never take that advise, and instead built high, thick walls around my heart...)


My thoughts are with you...

EA77 03-26-2013 06:57 PM

I'd wait 3-4 days before your next HCG test, as that's what I've always read as the recommendation to get the most accurate idea of doubling time. I'm hoping for good news for you and hope you can pass these next few days quickly and without too much stress.

oasis84 03-26-2013 09:02 PM

Thanks Jenger and EA! I'm starting to chill out a bit about it now and take more of a que sera sera approach. I will update with new results when I get them. Wishing everyone healthy and happy pregnancies smile.gif

oasis84 03-28-2013 12:31 AM

Another update for those listening out in internet land:


22 DPO (5w1d) third HCG results were 523, so it looks like this so far:


- HPT 12 DPO

+ HPT 16 DPO (didn't take any in between -- my best guess is I would have gotten a very faint positive on 14 or 15 DPO)

18 DPO (4w4d) - 122 hcg 43 progesterone

20 DPO (4w6d) - 205 hcg

22 DPO (5w1d) - 523 hcg


The doctor is encouraged and so am I. Although I'm still way below average in absolute terms, my doubling time over the last 48 hours was only 35 hours and my increase was 155%. I know I'm not out of the woods yet, and I'm going back for another blood draw four days from now. Based on the numbers at that point, the doc will order an ultrasound (or not). I should be up above 2000 at that point so enough to see a little tiny bean. She also put me on progesterone suppositories just to be on the safe side even though my progesterone is high at 43. I was confused by this but she said it's a precaution she's taking since I was just dx with mild (and thin) PCOS last month. Can't hurt, right?? I don't think you can OD on progesterone??


Holding on to hope that I'm just a late implanter and a slow riser naturally but still being guarded about this since I know I've got a while to go yet. In any case, I'm still thanking whatever higher power there is for this positive sign. 


Will keep updating, even if it's more for me than anyone else :)


Thanks for all the replies and encouragement.

EA77 03-28-2013 02:40 AM

Great news! Very encouraging. smile.gif

jenger 03-28-2013 10:04 AM

Yeah! Go, baby, GROW!

AnnaR 03-28-2013 10:27 AM

Those numbers are definitely encouraging.  I also had hcg tested but later on and they weren't _exactly_ doubling every two days, more like every 3 days.  As long as they are going up that is a good sign.  I will say the same thing people always say to me (I am a MAJOR worry-wart) which is hard to do, but it's the best advice:  Relax and take a breather, your body needs the energy to focus on growing that baby so the more rest and relaxation you can get the better.

oliversmommy329 03-28-2013 10:33 PM

Wow those are very encouraging numbers! Woo Hoo!


Edit: Was your ovulation date in question at all or are you pretty positive about your dates? Just curious :-)

oasis84 03-29-2013 01:39 AM

Thanks ladies... it'll be a long wait till Monday but I'm feeling a lot more calm now. Oliversmommy -- O date isn't really in question since I temp and use OPKs. It's possible the clomid made my temps wacky enough so as not to accurately reflect O but I had a pretty clear sustained rise.

My completely unsubstantiated theory is that I ran a really hard all-night relay race between 8 and 9 DPO (running a total of 15 miles in sprint intervals) and that this delayed implantation. Obvi not the smartest thing to do while ttc which is why I wasn't even expecting to get my bfp this month. Again there's literally no science behind this and I don't even know if it's possible for something like this to happen but that's my hunch.

oasis84 04-01-2013 08:43 AM

Just updating for the sake of posterity. Went in this a.m. for a fourth beta and number was 1583 at 5w5d or 26 DPO. So not amazing. My doubling time from my last beta was about 60 hours with a 75% increase in 48 hours. This is still acceptable but obviously not enough to make me or my doctor feel comfortable bc she had me come in right away for an ultrasound to rule out ectopic. They did the u/s and found no signs of ectopic and identified what they were almost positive was the gestational sac but couldn't confirm. So ectopic is still a remote possibility and blighted ovum and miscarriage are also in the running. But the doctor also told me there's a chance this is a normal pregnancy and I'm among the 5% of women whose hCG levels are lower and slower than average. I go back in two more days for another u/s at which point the baby should have grown if that's in fact what they saw. I'm not too optimistic considering my levels and the fact that there was no HB and the sac looked small to my admittedly untrained eye? But I am relieved that they saw no signs of ectopic.

Hope my story provides some useful info to someone down the line In a similar situation!

EA77 04-01-2013 02:02 PM

I still think your numbers look good! Based on the information here (, you're within the normal range for doubling time and HCG level (note that the weeks info is since conception, not ovulation). And at 5w5d, very few people would see a heartbeat. It doesn't start until 6weeks or so. That's why doctors usually have the ultrasound later in the week, to increase the likelihood of seeing a HB. Is it possible to reschedule your u/s for closer to 7 weeks? I don't know how you feel about u/s, but I'm in the camp of people who try to limit them, especially the t/v ultrasounds, so waiting an extra couple of days could save you an extra u/s. that said, if you have any physical warning signs of ectopic, I wouldn't wait on the u/s. Sending you warm, positive thoughts for a healthy baby!

oasis84 04-01-2013 08:39 PM

Thanks EA -- I'm still holding on to a bit of hope especially after my mother told me that when she was pregnant with me she just knew it and after missing her period (and always being a very regular 28 days) she went to the doctor for a blood test that came out negative. The doctor knew she was ttc so gave her provera to start her period. Yikes. A week or so later it still hadn't started and she still felt pregnant so she went back to the doc and lo and behold a second blood test revealed she was pregnant! She told me she spent the rest of the pregnancy freaking about whether or not proverb had harmed the baby. Since I stand here healthy and normal at 29 I guess it didn't smile.gif In any case she only remembered the story of her own pregnancy with me after taking to me about all my issues but it's interesting to think that *maybe* low hCG is in part genetic and like my mother I'm just one of those people.

I went into TTC and then pregnancy hoping and planning on an experience as free of medical intervention as possible. Somehow that has seemed to spiral completely out of control. I used clomid and metformin to conceive and now I've been poked and prodded and ultrasounded way more than I like. But the doc is still worried about possible ectopic so want another u/s in two days and I'm honestly so anxious about it I'm willing to take the risk. Of course this could be my doctor over-reacting... I wonder how many women have numbers as low as mine and never even know bc they never get tested and are thus never put through this medical gauntlet.

Anyway if you have any lit to share on TV u/s I would be happy to read it -- I'll admit I've only read a few things in passing and would def be interested in thoughts and opinions on this.

EA77 04-02-2013 07:41 PM

Sorry, I did all of my research five years ago when I was pregnant with my first, so I don't have any sources to cite. :/ But I totally hear you on signing up for things you initially thought you didn't want. I had a t/v ultrasound following a missed miscarriage, as I had a bleeding episode and was just too antsy to play the waiting game. I'm hoping these days pass quickly for you and that you get answers soon.

oasis84 04-04-2013 03:26 AM

Just updating again for anyone who stumbles upon this thread looking for information/similar experiences: I am in fact miscarrying. I went in yesterday at what would have been 6 weeks for an ultrasound and follow-up blood work and they couldn't even find the gestational sac (which they may or may not have seen two days earlier). This led to some alarm about it possibly being ectopic and since I had been having pains on one side and my hCG up to that point had been rising but not exactly doubling I was completely freaked out about this. They did my beta again though and numbers came back -- it dropped precipitously all the way down to 365 from 1500 something in just two days. As crazy as it sounds I was relieved to get this information for two reasons -- 1. It meant I didn't have an ectopic and that I was miscarrying naturally, and 2. It meant I finally had an answer and the anxiety and emotional roller coaster of the past few weeks was over with and we could move on to trying again. I started spotting less than an hour after we got the news. I had been on progesterone, though, so I believe I would have started spotting even earlier if I hadn't been supplementing. 


I had a hunch something wasn't right about this pregnancy from the get-go and I never really allowed myself to get too attached to the idea of it as a result. I'm glad I let my intuition guide me in this case. I do believe in the power of positive thinking -- but I'm also pragmatic. This pregnancy wasn't viable from the start and deep down I knew it. My husband, mother, sister, grandmother and friend were all there to provide the rosy perspective and tell me everything would be ok and I was worrying for nothing -- which was great -- but next time I'll know to fully trust my gut.


Silver lining: This was our 7th cycle of trying and at least now I know I CAN get pregnant.


Thanks to everyone who responded with encouragement and/or support.  


To provide a little hope to those other ladies who are having or have had a miscarriage:


On to the next...

corrina62176 04-04-2013 11:33 AM

Huge, fertile hugs to you.  Wishing you all the best for your next attempt.  stillheart.gif

EA77 04-04-2013 02:06 PM

I am so sorry for your loss. I'm glad you've found a silver lining, but it doesn't make it any less sad. Sending you healthy, sticky vibes for your next go.

oliversmommy329 04-04-2013 07:15 PM


rosie2727 05-08-2014 08:24 PM

Negative nancy here chiming in to add some info. In the TTC forum, in Feb '14, 3 women within like a week, all had similar betas and all miscarried too. Mine was like this:
15 dpo = 51
17dpo = 193
19 dpo = 500ish
22dpo = somewhere in the 100 range
(I could be slightly off, but this is a fair description of how things went down.)

after 4 losses, I've been through beta hell enough times to know that 50 something is not usually going to give good results. I realize that some ppl start low and are on the low end of normal, but it seems to be rare. I also came across (months ago - I don't have it now) an article saying that something like 75% of pregnancies that start with betas this low end in mc. I do have one acquaintance on here that had a beta of like 21 at first draw, that had a healthy pregnancy.

Not trying to make any future readers feel badly, I just hated the false hope. I feel ppl should know that the odds are stacked against them....

If I ever get pregnant again, I better have an initial number of like 400 before I'll be happy!

oasis84 05-09-2014 12:01 AM

Since this thread has been resurrected I thought I'd chime in and say we went on to conceive two months after this and had a healthy baby girl in February who I'm nursing as I write this smile.gif Those betas started off on the lowish side, too -- 121 at 15 DPO. But all was well. I can't help but think that if I hadn't miscarried the first pregnancy I wouldn't have the beautiful daughter I have now. So maybe it happened for a reason. Best of luck to all those still trying.

rosie2727 05-09-2014 06:22 AM

oasis: that's great!! Congrats on your baby girl! Maybe I'll have my rainbow some day...

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:52 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Resources saved on this page: MySQL 5.26%
vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.