1. Getting pregnant
  2. Trying to conceive
  3. Signs of pregnancy

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15 DPO: Pregnancy Symptoms and Signs to Look Out For

When you’re trying to conceive, you probably want to find out if you’re pregnant as soon as possible. By the time you’re 15 days past ovulation (DPO), it’s highly likely that you’ll be able to know for sure very soon.

15 DPO: most common pregnancy symptoms 

If you have a regular menstrual cycle and get your period about every 28 days, you will probably miss your first period around 15 to 17 DPO if you’re pregnant. For most people, missing their period is the first big symptom of pregnancy.

The beginning of your pregnancy will be counted from the first day of your last period. If you have a regular cycle, that means that you’ll be four weeks pregnant by the time you miss your period.

Home pregnancy tests work by detecting the levels of a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in your urine. As your pregnancy progresses, the levels of hCG in your urine will rise. That’s why some people get a negative test result even when they are pregnant (a “false negative”). A false negative can happen if you take the test too early, before the level of hCG is high enough to show clear results.

You probably won’t experience many pregnancy symptoms at 15 DPO. There is, however, a symptom of pregnancy that you might have already experienced by 15 DPO: implantation bleeding. Although not everyone experiences implantation bleeding, if it does occur, it’s one of the earliest signs of pregnancy. Implantation bleeding happens when a fertilized egg travels down to your uterus and burrows into your uterine lining. This process is called implantation, and it can cause some mild bleeding.

Implantation bleeding usually happens 10 to 14 days after conception. You might experience very light spotting or mild bleeding that can resemble a light period. Some people only see a pink tinge on toilet paper. It can be difficult to differentiate implantation bleeding from your period. Implantation bleeding occurs early, around days 24 to 28 of your menstrual cycle.

If you experienced some light bleeding before 15 DPO, it may have been the first sign of your pregnancy. However, not everyone experiences this symptom. In some cases, the bleeding is so light that you don’t notice it. Not experiencing implantation bleeding doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re not pregnant.

Although rare, some people experience very early pregnancy symptoms at 15 DPO. Some of the most common early pregnancy signs include:

In many cases, you won’t experience strong pregnancy symptoms until you’re a bit further along. So if you’re at 15 DPO and don’t feel anything unusual, there’s nothing to worry about. It’s perfectly normal to not notice any pregnancy symptoms at the start of the first trimester. As your pregnancy progresses, your hormone levels will rise and you’ll start to experience traditional pregnancy symptoms!

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15 DPO: Big fat negative, but still no period?

If you’re trying to conceive and missed the first day of your period, you may be tempted to take a pregnancy test immediately. It can be disappointing to get a big fat negative (BFN) pregnancy test result at 15 DPO. And if you still don’t get your period after a negative pregnancy test result, you might feel confused. After all, getting pregnant can be difficult.

But a negative pregnancy test result at 15 DPO doesn’t always mean that you’re not expecting. It might mean that your hCG levels were still too low when you took that first pregnancy test. If your period still doesn’t come for the next few days, take a new pregnancy test. If you’re pregnant, it’s very likely that your hCG will have risen enough by then to be detected by the test.

It’s also possible that your ovulation was delayed, which could result in a late period. Additionally, research shows that up to 10 percent of fertilized eggs haven’t implanted into the uterine lining by the first day of a missed period.

If days go by without having a period and you’re still getting negative pregnancy tests, visit a health care provider. In very rare cases, you can get negative results from home pregnancy tests and need to have a blood pregnancy test to confirm your pregnancy. However, it could also be that stress or other factors have delayed your period. In any case, your health care provider will be able to confirm whether or not you’re pregnant and answer your questions.

It’s also possible to get a positive pregnancy test result at 15 DPO, only to have your period start in the next few days. If this happens to you, call your health care provider. Bleeding after a positive pregnancy test could mean that you’re having a very early miscarriage.

15 DPO and a faint line: what it means 

A lot of people who are trying to conceive would love to see a big fat positive pregnancy test result by 15 DPO. But in some cases, your results will be more subtle, and you’ll only be able to see a faint line.

A faint positive can mean that you’re indeed pregnant, but your hCG levels are still too low to show up clearly on the test. In other cases, a faint line can be an evaporation line.

Evaporation lines show up on home pregnancy tests when you let them rest for longer than advised by the manufacturer before you check the results. If you see a faint line within the timeframe established by the test’s manufacturer, it’s very likely that you’re pregnant. But if you let the test sit for too long, a faint line may be an evaporation line.

In other cases, a faint line can be caused by an early pregnancy loss. After a miscarriage, your hCG levels may still be elevated. If you see a faint line on your pregnancy test, but you’ve experienced symptoms such as bleeding and cramping, you might have experienced a very early miscarriage or you might be having an extrauterine pregnancy (a condition when a fertilized egg is implanted somewhere outside the uterine cavity).

15 DPO usually marks the first day of your missed period. When you’re trying to conceive, missing your period can be an exciting moment. But even if you don’t get a positive pregnancy test yet, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you haven’t conceived. Waiting a few more days could be all you need to get that big fat positive test result!

Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “Pregnancy.” U.S. Food and Drug Administration, FDA, https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/home-use-tests/pregnancy.

Wilcox, A J, et al. “Natural Limits of Pregnancy Testing in Relation to the Expected Menstrual Period.” JAMA, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 10 Oct. 2001, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11594902.

Chard, T. “Pregnancy Tests: a Review.” Human Reproduction (Oxford, England), U.S. National Library of Medicine, May 1992, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1639991.

“Implantation Bleeding: Normal in Early Pregnancy?” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 9 May 2019, www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/expert-answers/implantation-bleeding/faq-20058257.

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