26 answers

Spotting 1St Tri. - HCG Levels Rising - No Baby on Ultrasound?!?!?

Hello,

I found out a couple of weeks ago that we are pregnant w/our 3rd baby! We weren't expecting it, but now that we are over the initial shock, we are VERY excited! It's REALLY early, so I've been having blood draws to check my hcg levels and they've been rising adequately - not super high, but still w/in the ranges.

On Thursday I starting spotting/bleeding and then had some cramping so we went in for an u/s yesterday and they couldn't see ANYTHING, but my hcg levels had risen OKAY from the previous day. I'm going in for another blood draw on Monday and we'll have those results later in the afternoon.

I'm still bleeding a little, but have no more cramping and haven't noticed any major blood clots or any tissue being expelled.

I'm just wondering and hoping there is someone out here that has experienced something similar and had a positive outcome? I'm completely FREAKED out that we didn't see anything on the ultrasound - maybe we're just too early yet? We think we might be about 7 weeks? Is is possible for the baby to "hide"?

Trying to stay positive and keep hope that there's a little baby in there and that everything will be okay.

thank you!

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What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Hello Everyone,

I just wanted to share with you that we lost our baby. My hormone levels dropped significantly in the last 2 days. I'm so sad, but know god had a different plan for this little soul. I'm so thankful to all of you for being there and for telling me your stories - it means so much to have this group.

I really APPRECIATE your kind words, thoughts and prayers. My heart goes out to you that have lost little ones in the past. I'm humbled by the miracle of life and my children - please remember to give your kids extra hugs and snuggles.

A.

Featured Answers

Unless you had a transvaginal ultrasound, you won't see anything until aroun 8-10 weeks. You can see a sac around 4 weeks but only with a transvaginal ultrasound. I wouldn't worry too much if I were you. You may be earlier along than than you think. The bleeding could be from a common thing called a subchorionic hemmorhage. I bled at 5 weeks with my first but had a transvaginal ultrasound that detected the baby, the heartbeat, and the hemmorhage. She's a healthy 21 month old now. With this pregnancy, I had a transvaginal ultrasound at 4 weeks (to determine pregnancy). They saw a sac but no baby. My hcg levels were normal (high) so a few weeks later I had another ultrasound that found the baby and the heartbeat. Again, you may be earlier than you think and that's why the ultrasound didn't find the baby! Good luck!!!

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I have to say I agree with Beth. I had one miscarriage, then got pregnant again. My HCG levels were rising, bubling like they are 'supposed to'. I went for an ultrasound that showed nothing. I was totally devestated. I just couldn't go through it again (this was after 10 years of infertility). My levels kept rising, but not they way the 'book' says. I went back for one more ultrasound and I can still remember how horrible I felt that day. I wouldn't even look at the screen. I wilo never forget when the tech said theres the heartbeat! Well, my empty ultrasound and non doubling HCG levels is now a very happy and healthy 7 year old!!

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Hi there. I have never posted and in fact have not logged on in a long time and something made me look here... Why maybe because I can tell you I understand exactly what you are going through. My husband and I when we first got married we had 3 dd's. I had 2 and he 1. We decided that we would try for a baby. Mainly healthy but thinking that we needed to have a son as we were had 3 girls. So we ttc (try to conceive) for 8 months and we finally got our BFP (big fat positive) We were so happy. Then I started spotting and went to the ER and they did an u/s(ultrasound) and there was nothing but a sac - a deteriorating one at that. The ER Dr said that I was NOT pg... I was angry and hurt as I had been to the dr and they had told me I was pg and I had aan exam too. After talking to my dr I was told it was a blighted ovum. I did a lot of searching and here are are 2 links that will help you.

The 1st is an updated informational page from a woman (Lindy that had started a support group online and I found out exactly what had happened. I was relieved that I was not alone and that someone else had been through what I had.

http://blightedovum.kokopuff.net/blightedovum.html

Next is the support group that has a lot more information. The women there were my saving grace as I was quite a basket case.

http://blightedovum.proboards46.com/index.cgi?

I am so sorry that you are going through this uncertain time. I hope that you are just early and they are unablt to see the baby yet. Usually w/ a transvaginal u/s there should be a fetal pole @ 5 weeks and by 6 - 7 weeks there should be a heartbeat.

I will check back to see how things are doing.

((((Big hugs))))

1 mom found this helpful

Ok let me tell you my story which still baffles doctors to this day.

I had a ultrasound early I wanna say somewhere around 5 weeks pregnant it was confirm pregnancy and they saw the yolk sac etc...

I went back in about 2 weeks later (about 7weeks prego) and they couldn't find ANYTHING, sent me to another doctor across town. I had 3 ultrasounds on this one day and they finally told me I miscarried, they couldn't find anything and told me what to expect and sent me on my way. Crushed, devasted and depressed I went. I never bled, nothing came out of me I started freaking out and getting really grossed out that there could be a dead baby in me. I switched clinics and told my new doctor I had miscarried and nothing came out thinking I'd need a D&C. This doctor drew blood and sent me for another ultrasound. At this ultrasound the technician asked why I was there and when I told her she asked me a second time and was looking at me like I was a nutcase. She goes there is your baby and there is the heartbeat. I was like OMG it's alive? She said YES.

This was 7 years ago. Now I'm currently prego with #2 due in October and I am arguing back and forth with my doctor my due date. They say according to ultrasound I'm so far along, I say I know my body and my last period I'm this far along. They say ultrasounds are extremely accurate in the first part of the first trimester so they're right. I say hey I've had utlrasounds be wrong before I'm right. LOL... it's like whatever I know I'm right.

So I donot trust ultrasonds 100%.............

I have a neighbor who is about 13 weeks pregnant right now and had heavy bleeding in the beginning with killer cramps then everything was fine and now a few weeks later is spotting again. She keeps having ultrasounds to confirm everything is alright and is still pregnant. She's had nothing but problems this entire time.

Just keep your hopes up and try not to worry. Keep going in for blood work.

I have a beautiful 6.5 year old daughter who is my miracle I guess she was hiding or something it's really weird. Some people think maybe prehaps I was having twins and lost one or she was hiding. I dunno and never will. I hope that makes you feel better and I will pray for you.

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I had the exact same thing happen the first time I got pregnant. I wish I could tell you that it all worked out fine. My hormone levels increased also and they found nothing in my uterus as well. Where they did find it was in my tube. I had an ectopic pregnacy. The way the found it was by using the vaginal ultrasound. I had emergency surgery that day to have it removed. I did not lose my tube, and that is wonderful and all was fine. I have wonderful 7 yr. old twin boys! I'll keep you in my thoughts and hope for the best.

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I know several people who have been told that they had a "blighted ovum" or that the baby was gone and they should just go ahead and do a D&C and get it over with. Three of them refused the D&C and went on to have healthy, full term babies!! Imagine if they had taken their doctor's advice, they would have had an abortion unknowingly!
Many women bleed, spot, or even bleed a LOT, and there is nothing wrong with the baby. It happened to me with my 4th. I bled so badly, I went right through my pants! He is almost 13 years old now.
Being dehydrated can cause bleeding, that was my problem. Sometimes a dry vaginal area can cause bleeding. Any number of things that don't affect the pregnancy, even.

Try drinking a lot of water and abstain from intercourse for awhile. Try not to worry, whatever the course, it will come to what it comes to no matter how much you worry.

I had less bleeding one time and had a miscarriage. You just don't know. But I learned so much from it. I learned to trust God with my family size, He is the giver of life, not me. I learned what other women are going through when they lose a child, empathy. I learned to be thankful for all my children, by the grace of God I have them! I could as easily have not been able to have children.

Lots of water, lots of rest!

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For my second child, I actually thought I was getting my period, cramping, bleeding, but was actually pregnant, and it was an implantation bleed.

For my third, I took a pg test, it came out positive, and then I started to cramp and bleed, then just bleed. We went in for an ultrasound, and they thought they saw an yolk sac, but I was looking 3 weeks behind where I should be. My dr said it was probably an incomplete miscarriage, and we would wait to see if I miscarried completely, wait two weeks. In that time frame, I felt more pregnant, the bleeding stopped and when we went in for our next ultrasound two weeks later, there he was, now only measuring 1 week behind. Because we had not really been trying, and I had not paid attention, I had miscalculated my ovulation date.
Now I have one of the most precious, healthy happy boys around, truly my gift from God!
My prayers are with you, and I know it seems really difficult right now, but I can tell you, after having a miscarriage, and some very high risk pregnancies, the Lord has provided me with the children I was meant to have, and now, I could not imagine it any other way.

A.;)

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Well, A., I'm just going to tell you what happened to me when I had very similar syptoms as you. I'm sorry it's not good news but everyone was fine in the end and I ended up getting pregnant again soon and had a healthy beautiful baby boy. Anyway, I can't remember what it's called, but my body thought I was pregnant so it made all the hormones and got ready to carry a fetus, but something had gone wrong in the very early stages of it and a baby never formed. I had an ultrasound and, like you, nothing showed up. So, I had had a miscarraige of sorts that involved bleeding and some mild pain. I did not need a D&C and I went right back to "normal." I wish you the best of luck and I hope my story, although it's not the ending you were looking for, helps you get through your difficult time. Happy Mother's Day.

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it probably is too early to see the baby. 6 weeks is the earliest to see anything. you didn't say whether they saw a sac or not. i had spotting with my second pregnancy and had a healthy daughter and also with my third with the same outcome. the doctor couldn't explain the spotting, but attributed it to the cervix and the number of pregnancies. i believe there is still hope. just be patient and don't make any rash decisions. i think it is a good sign that the hcg levels are going up. hopefully you will see your baby on the next ultrasound. good luck!
~S.

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First of all, I know how hard those first few weeks are. I was paranoid too and felt like I had lost symptoms so I went in to get checked. I was right around 6-7 weeks. They saw a sac but not a baby or fetal pole or anything else. The midwife said it could be too early to see anything or it could be a start of a miscarriage. I worried like crazy for the next week and half and went in for another ultrasound at 8.5 weeks andlow and behold, there was a little heartbeat and I finally had confimation and relief. As you know, there is such extensive growth that happens in those first few days that you could not see something one day and then see it the next. I now have a beautiful 4 month old little girl. Since your HCG results are still normal, I hope you can go in again for another ultrasound and see that beautiful little heart beat in another week or two. Good luck! B.

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Hi A.. When I was pregnant with my fourth boy, around 7-8 weeks along, I started bleeding. When I went in for my check-up my doctor said he thought I was having a miscarriage. We did the blood tests and ultrasounds and everything was fine. I had something called a sub-chorionic tear. I had bleeding almost my entire pregnancy. One day I had to go to the ER because I had soaked about three pads in about an hour. Turns out the little guy was just wiggling around and had kicked the spot where the tear was and just aggrivated enough to make it bleed heavier. I had to have an ultrasound done about every month, I was on restrictions on how much weight I could lift. He decided to come 5 weeks early and had to spend a week in the NICU unit, but he's now a happy, mess making almost 14 month old baby.
If your cramping has stopped, and your levels are going up, it might just be to early to see anything on the ultrasound yet. I would try not to worry about it if you can. I know it's hard not to though. Good Luck and I hope everything turns out OK.

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I know that when I lost my second pregnancy, they thought the baby had stopped developing at 9 weeks and the ultrasound showed just the tiniest little peanut but that was also with an internal ultrasound as opposed to the traditional external one. Not knowing which you had done, it is possible for them to not be able to see it. If you had an external, I would ask your OBGYN if there is an internal ultrasound available. I also know that it is possible to have spotting, sometimes even what seems like normal menstrual flow while you're pregnant and still have a healthy baby. The cramping does worry me though. It is possible that you have a partial molar pregnancy (definitly the cause of my second miscarriage, possibly the cause of my first one). I don't want to scare you more than you already are, but they are fairly common. Keep seeing your doc, ask for the internal ultrasound if you had an external, and I'll keep you in my thoughts. Best wishes.

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A.,

Only time will tell for sure what your situation is. I hope you have a miraculous outcome and that your baby is healthy and hiding. When I had the same experience, I wasn't so fortunate. I had a blighted ovum. It means that everything starts off...there is a sac and a placenta. I even started showing a little. HCG levels were high because it is the hormones that cause that, not the baby. But the baby never developed past being a fertilized egg. My doctor said it was important to understand that I was pregnant, but a baby was never there. It never developed that far, but my body didn't know that. It was trying to continue with the pregnancy.

I was really disappointed, of course, but was amazed when I found out how incredibly common this is. Between 25% and 50% of pregnancies end in miscarriages, and many are blighted ovums. I had a D&C and two months later I was pregnant again. He is now three years old and perfectly healthy.

Again, I hope things work out really well for you. But if not, please know that it is not your fault. These things happen for a reason. I remember when my doctor told me the news, then said I was really lucky and it could be so much worse. I thought she was being rude and unsympathetic at first. I later had friends who miscarried at 20 weeks when they brought all their kids in to find out the sex of the baby or friends who's child was born with terrible defects and didn't survive. Then I understood. I was really, really lucky and I am so grateful God spared me that heartache. My 3 year old son and 1 year old daughter both started off life as a twin, but the twin never developed. I am not heartbroken about it. God knows what he is doing and I focus on loving the kids he gave me.

Best of luck,
S.

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PS i LOVE how your name is spelt!!

i wouldnt freak out yet... it coule be implantation bleeding.. so just wait it out, maybe take it easy and dont stress out... it will help to be calm it could be miscarriage.. but like i said, it sounds like its just too early to tell... so just relax and wait to see what comes!!

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A.,
Since you already have 2 kids your case is probably not like mine but I wanted to share my story anyways so you can "cover" your bases. I have a 4 year old daughter who was born almost 3 weeks early and was pretty small (5 lbs 4 oz) which no one thought anything of. Last year we got pregnant and everything was well until at about 10 weeks I had VERY slight spotting and slight cramping (which might've been psychological b/c I freaked after I spotter). I went into the ER and they did an ultrasound which showed a perfectly healthy baby with a heartbeat. The tech said there was some old blood there but said it happens sometimes b/c of all the vessels developing, etc. I never spotted again. At 16.5 weeks I went for an appt and they couldn't find a heartbeat. I had an US and the baby had no heartbeat and was not moving. My little girl had died. After delivering her and doing many tests they found out I had a mutation that makes my blood clot too much (Factor 5) and I was having placental abruption with both of my kids (thats why my 1st was born early). After getting my medical records from my prev OB I also saw that my OB noted that there was signs of placental abruption with my 1st daughter (which she never bothered to tell me). I had the same thing with my other daughter and that's why I had the spotting. I hope this is not the case for you but I wish I would've been told so that I could've tried preventative therapy. Anyways, it's just a simple blood test so if you've had premature or small babies I would get checked b/c my perinatalogist said those are two major signs of placental abruption. Good luck and hope you had a happy Mother's Day.

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I am not sure about not seeing the baby on the ultrasound, but I spotted a bit in my 1st Trimester and gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. I had a miscarriage with my first pregnancy and that was more than minor spotting, so hopefully all is OK. I will pray that everything turns out for you and your family.

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Unless you had a transvaginal ultrasound, you won't see anything until aroun 8-10 weeks. You can see a sac around 4 weeks but only with a transvaginal ultrasound. I wouldn't worry too much if I were you. You may be earlier along than than you think. The bleeding could be from a common thing called a subchorionic hemmorhage. I bled at 5 weeks with my first but had a transvaginal ultrasound that detected the baby, the heartbeat, and the hemmorhage. She's a healthy 21 month old now. With this pregnancy, I had a transvaginal ultrasound at 4 weeks (to determine pregnancy). They saw a sac but no baby. My hcg levels were normal (high) so a few weeks later I had another ultrasound that found the baby and the heartbeat. Again, you may be earlier than you think and that's why the ultrasound didn't find the baby! Good luck!!!

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My daughter hid and no one belived me till the drs did not tell me my ex signed for me to have a gallbladder and or uterus and other organ removed and said I had a bleeding ulcer.
She came out red faced, pink haired and howling at the full moon several months later...1 1/2 month almost past due date.

My first child hid in my spinal cord area so long he litterly broke Mommas back.

yes babies do hid...it is mothers nature way of protecting them some say...I say my son is right it is away for them to naughty and catty.

Good luck and rest and relax for this is the best you can do at this point.
Happy mothers day.

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I have to say I agree with Beth. I had one miscarriage, then got pregnant again. My HCG levels were rising, bubling like they are 'supposed to'. I went for an ultrasound that showed nothing. I was totally devestated. I just couldn't go through it again (this was after 10 years of infertility). My levels kept rising, but not they way the 'book' says. I went back for one more ultrasound and I can still remember how horrible I felt that day. I wouldn't even look at the screen. I wilo never forget when the tech said theres the heartbeat! Well, my empty ultrasound and non doubling HCG levels is now a very happy and healthy 7 year old!!

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I had the same thing happen to me with our first daughter. I went into the emergency room since I had started bleeding pretty heavy and they could not see any thing so I had to follow up with my doctor the next day. He still could not see anything but said it was ok since I was not very far along and all my levels were good. He watched me pretty closely for the next couple months and everything was fine. I did however spot all the way through the pregnancy.

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I had bleeding around 5 weeks preg. They saw nothing on ultrasound.( which they shouldn't around 5 weeks..but my HCG levels were higher) the ER said I miscarried...went in to the Doc a couple weeks later and They said There was a heartbeat! Bled again around 8 weeks... turns out I had a hemorage sack toward the bottome of my cervix and so it had nowhere to be absorbed and just came out... after about 12 weeks I had no more bleeding and have a healthy 9 month old now.

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The only thing you can do is to relax, take care of yourself, and wait.

I also had a "blighted ovum" as my first pregnancy experience and my symptoms were very much like you describe. My doctor gave me the choice to wait to let my body take care of it, but I ended up having a D&C after bleeding on and off for about 3 months. Then I was fine and was pregnant again in a short time.

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It could be that you are not as far along as you think you are. By 7 weeks they can usually see yolk sac and sometimes pick up a heart beat. But if your HCG levels are rising at a normal rate (they should double every 72 hours)it is a very good sign that everything is okay. Typically with a blighted ovum, they will rise but not at the same rate as with a healthy pregnancy. I did a lot of reading up on blighted ovums, because I went through a similar situation with my 1st pregnancy. I went in to the doctor and said that I had taken several pregnancy tests because even though I had gotten my period on schedule, it was just light spotting and had not gotten any heavier for the last week. She told me that I probably had a blighted ovum, but that they would do some tests. They checked my HCG levels and did an ultrasound that day. The ultrasound just showed an empty sac. So I was just devastated. My husband and I had been TTC for over 2 years and when we got the positive on the pregnancy test we were overjoyed. I went back in 2 days later for another HCG test, and the levels had doubled like they were supposed to. So the doctors scheduled another ultrasound. The second ultrasound showed a teeny tiny little yolk sac, but still no heartbeat. (the 1st ultrasound was at ~5 weeks and the 2nd ~ 6 weeks). And all this time I was continuing to spot lightly. The doctor said for the time being I had a viable pregnancy, but because of the spotting not to get my hopes up. She also would not give me a due date. In the mean time my job caused us to move out of state, so I set myself up with an OBGYN in our new home town. My first appointment with him was at 12 weeks. I had continued to spot lightly this whole time (occasionally even having a little bit of clotty material). The first thing he did was check for a heart beat using the fetal monitor and when we heard the beat coming out of that little machine, I totally lost it. I had been so terrified that there would be no beat and that the baby had not developed like the 1st dr. predicted and I just hadn't expelled it completely yet. I continued to spot until about 16 weeks and my doctor had no explanantion for it other than "some women just spot" And several months later we got our little miracle, a beautiful completely healthy baby girl. I am currently 16 weeks pregnant with my 2nd child and again went through pretty much the same thing with this one. I spotted until the 15th week with this baby and again the 1st ultrasound (about 5 weeks) just showed an empty sac. But my levels rose like normal and the second ultrasound at 7.5 weeks showed a yolk sac and a very faint heartbeat. This doctor did a 3rd ultrasound at 9 weeks and there was a teeny tiny little fetus (basically looked like a blob, but you could kind of differentiate the head and body). And at our last appointment we heard a good strong heartbeat on the fetal monitor. So we have faith that everything is going to be all right again. But I know how scary this all is for you. Try to relax and remember however it turns out that god has a plan. Good luck.

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Hi A.,

I too know someone who had symptoms very similar to yours, but her doctor wasn't comfortable doing a D&C until they could confirm a miscarriage via u/s.... 7 & 1/2 months later, she had a healthy baby boy!

Not knowing is soooo hard, though. Hang in there, and know that you are being mentioned in many prayers!

1 mom found this helpful

Dear A.,
I can't offer anything but prayers and {{{HUGS}}} and I really hope everything turns out ok for you and your baby. I will be thinking about you.
jen

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Hello,
I have HOPEFUL news!! Here's my story!! When I got pg with my daughter, I had spotting at almost 6 weeks. I went in for an ultrasound and there was nothing. Just an empty gestational sac. The ultrasound tec said I had a blighted ovum and that the baby was never going to form. They said by almost 6 weeks, there should be SOMETHING in there. My Dr. ran things by me and told me that she thought it might be too early and wanted to monitor my HCG levels. I agreed. Well, after having blood tests every other day for almost 2 weeks, my levels kept going up. The spotting had stopped, so I stayed hopeful. Well, a little further along I started cramping bad, so went in and they did another u/s. I thought for sure I was losing the baby, or...they were right and the baby wasn't forming. Well, on that u/s, the baby was there, healthy and strong, and had a great perfect heartbeat!

I look at my perfect healthy 2 year old daughter every day and thank the lord that my Dr. didn't want to go ahead and listen to the u/s people and have me get a D&C!

So....honestly, I'd keep your hopes up and pray! Dr's don't know everything!! You could always ask for another u/s in a week or so.

A girl on my online forum had the same thing as this also. I told her my story and she waited, and now she has a healthy baby boy!!!

On the otherside, I don't want you to get your hopes up, because this could still end up as a blighted ovum, but I just wanted to let you know there's hope!!!

My prayers are with you!

H.

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well I was spotting for a few days with my first child. you usually cant see anything on a regular ultrasound for a little while longer and same goes for the heartbeat. I doubt that they will do a vaginal ultrasound while you are so early and bleeding. Im sure you know that you just have to wait. I will think positive thoughts for you.
There is also the possibility of a molar pregnancy but again you wont know for a little while.

Try not to freak out, easier said than done right? It is normal to have some light spotting in your first trimester of pregnancy. Sometimes it may be implantation of the embryo. Hopefully you have gone in for another HCG draw. Usually you have to wait 36-48 hours to see if those numbers have doubled or risen adequately. Sometimes you may not see anything on the ultrasound this early in the pregnancy. I know with our pregnancies (which were in-vitro) we had to so a vaginal ultrasound around 7 weeks after transfer and even then if there was a baby it was a small blinking dot on the screen(heart movement). Maybe you are just too early to see or you may be off with dates. Keep your head up.

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