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OPKs- I know a faint second line means negative but...

(21 Posts)
SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 16:32:27

Hi all,
I got some cheap OPKs from Amazon. My cycle is 43 days so I'm tracking it quite a bit this month using OPKs alongside temping (for the first time) to try and understand my cycle a bit better & in the hope I can provide my GP with some useful information should I need to.
I started using the OPKs on Saturday & got no lines appearing other than the control line. However for the past 2 days there has been a faint second line. According to the packet this still means negative as the second line has to be as strong as the first to produce a positive result. However I'm just wondering if anyone can explain to me why there is now a line (albeit not very strong) when there wasn't previously? Does anyone know what, if anything, is being detected?
It's only cd11 for me so I know I'm no where near ovulating yet (if I do at all sad ). I'm just genuinely intrigued as to why the OPK sometimes gives you a faint line & other times nothing at all?

AFreudianSlip Mon 10-Aug-15 19:23:32

I've been ov testing this month (for the first time in ages) and like you I have long cycles. My cycles are around 34/35 days. I tend to find that I get nothing for a few days after af, then the line slowly gets darker and peaks around day 20/21. The test line is as dark, if not darker, than the control. If you are ov'ing it's likely that it's approx 14 days before you normally have your af (so day 29ish for you). I think you have some hcg near enough all the time in your system but get a surge, which the ov test picks up, 12-48 hours before ovulation.

SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 21:04:20

Thanks very much for your answer smile hopefully its a good sign to indicate that I do actually ovulate, I guess I'll just have to wait and see! When it gets near to your predicted ovulation day do you test more than once a day (if the surge can be 12 hours later)?

SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 21:06:00

Sorry I mean if ovulation can be just 12 hours after...

Rememberallball Mon 10-Aug-15 21:11:18

The opks pick up lutinising (? sp.) hormone and, as you progress through your cycle to ovulation, your body produces increasing levels of LH until you ovulate when you then start producing progesterone. The opk will be picking up the low levels of LH and as time goes on the line will darken until you get a positive result.

SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 21:14:19

Thank you! Do you think I can take that as a positive indication that I do ovulate then? I'm having bloods done in September but with my cycle being that way it is my GP is having a bit of a shot in the dark about when my equivalent of 'day 21' is!!

jellybelly85 Mon 10-Aug-15 21:17:39

OPK test for a surge in luteinizing hormone (LH). This is the hormone which signals your ovaries to release an egg (i.e. ovulation) - so the theory is a positive OPK indicates more LH than normal and that ovulation is imminent in the next 12-24 hrs. We have low levels of LH in our urine throughout our cycles (hence why you may pick up a faint line) - but this increases once a cycle to signal ovulation. It may be helpful to track CM or BBT alongside to make your ov easier to predict.

HCG is a different hormone which is ONLY present when you are pregnant. An OPK will not detect this at all - only pregnancy tests!

A faint line is not a positive result for OPK (this is different from how pregnancy tests are interpreted). Do make sure that you are doing the OPK test correctly - most makes suggest you test between 10am-8pm and have not peed for a few hours before hand so your pee is not diluted.

SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 21:33:06

Thanks Jelly, I've been doing the tests around 4.30pm & trying not to drink too much in the couple of hours beforehand like the instructions say. Although they don't say anything about not peeing for a few hours before...I might need to start restricting the amount of water I drink during the working day if that's the case! I find it quite odd that clearblue ovulation tests insist that they need to be done using your first pee of the day but the cheaper OPKs say the opposite...

jellybelly85 Mon 10-Aug-15 21:40:51

Yeah I don't understand that either... I find it hard to not pee for more than an hour, so I test after 1.5 hrs of not peeing. If I see a faint line I know I've done the test correctly as its picking up the normal low levels (although I've not had a proper dark line yet). Either way - still dtd every 3 days to cover all bases!

AFreudianSlip Mon 10-Aug-15 21:48:16

Sorry yes LH not Hcg, silly me! Still trying to get the hang of it too Shary smile.

I only test once a day normally, sometimes twice when I get a positive to try and gauge how long it lasts.

And generally test early evening after work.

Good luck!

SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 21:49:02

That's my problem, I need the ladies pretty much every hour of the day! How long have you been using OPKs for? smile

SharyBobbins Mon 10-Aug-15 21:52:05

Thanks AFreudianSlip smile
I'd love some pregnancy hormones!! Though to be honest I'd be happy with some 'proof of ovulation hormones' this cycle!

Sanch1 Tue 11-Aug-15 10:20:57

After ovulation is there then no LH? And the OPK wont show anything other than the control line? My cycles are a bit all over the place since coming off the pill. Last months was 35 which is more in line to what I used to be before the pill, every 28-35 days. This month OH and I made sure we DTD regularly from day 11-21 to cover potential ovulation, I have then done OPK's since to check in case I ovulate lots later and I have a longer cycle, but there is no other line just the control one. Would this suggest that I have ovulated and there is no more LH to detect even faintly? Sorry, if I'm not making much sense!

SharyBobbins Tue 11-Aug-15 14:09:46

Hi Sanch, I would assume that means you've ovulated but I'm pretty clueless & its my first cycle using that type of OPK...hopefully one of the other ladies on here can give you a clearer answer than me smile

jellybelly85 Tue 11-Aug-15 17:30:45

My understanding is that small low levels of LH are detectable in your pee throughout your cycle. The only time when this changes is when the LH surges signalling ovulation is likely to be imminent. Then the levels return to the low background levels. LH doesn't run out. Also important to realise LH Surge isn't proof of ovulation, but detects a hormone which is present during ovulation.

Sanch - a negative result isn't proof that you've already ovulated. It means you are not currently producing high levels of LH which is expected during ovulation.

Hope that helps (I'm not a pro - only been using mine for a cycle and not sure how useful they are...)

Rememberallball Tue 11-Aug-15 21:35:06

OPK's can be useful to pinpoint when you get a surge of LH but, without the corresponding post ovulation surge of progesterone, there's no guarantee that you have actually ovulated.

I've had a few d21 bloods done over the last 4-5 cycles (3 samples on alternate cycles) and only one cycle has had progesterone levels indicative of my having ovulated. At the same time, I've had a surge of LH every cycle so, if I'd not had the bloods done, I'd have thought I'd ovulated each cycle.

Thankfully, the most recent test showed a normal post ovulation progesterone level!

SharyBobbins Tue 11-Aug-15 21:45:42

I'm having day 21 tests in September. The problem is my GP is having to estimate when my day 21 equivalent is this time round due to my cycle length. Am I right in thinking they should be done 7 days after ovulation? So 7 days after a LH surge/peak is (hopefully) detected?

Hellionandfriends Tue 11-Aug-15 21:50:37

A positive opk doesn't mean you have ovulated properly. I had positive opk's but still failed the day 21 progesterone test consistently.

Your gp can test twice this cycle to cover the long period. So aim for 7 days post positive opk and 7 days before the end of your cycle

Hellionandfriends Tue 11-Aug-15 21:51:19

Yes 7 days after ovulation is the aim

Hellionandfriends Tue 11-Aug-15 21:54:35

Keep testing because you might find you have a prolonged period of positive opk's. You can identify the day with the darkest opk and take that as THE correct one.

Chamonix1 Sun 12-Mar-17 15:24:26

Just taken a second test, the lines actually lighter than this morning! Very confused confused

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