Most notably, high levels of lutenizing hormone stimulate ovulation. The late s marked the first modern pregnancy tests, in which urine was injected into animals: Most labs would only test urine sent by a doctor, meaning that women had to rely on their doctors to get tested. Most women instead relied on morning sickness and sore breasts as early clues to their pregnancy, not visiting a doctor to confirm until months after conception. The first stick tests similar to at-home tests on the market today were developed in
But as recently as the s, women could not definitively confirm pregnancy until they started to noticeably gain weight or feel the fetus move—several months into the pregnancy.
Pee is for Pregnant: The history and science of urine-based pregnancy tests
However, a test using frogs, developed the British scientist Lancelot Hogbenmarked the pinnacle of these animal tests. Since the s, at-home pregnancy tests have become the norm, with about 20 million sold per year in the US alone. These new tests used antibodies. The oldest known test involved urinating on grain seeds and seeing if they sprouted. Vaitukaitis, Braunstein, and Ross had developed a test that could detect pregnancy just weeks after conception —on the first day of a missed period. In the first known pregnancy tests, ancient Egyptian women urinated on barley or wheat seeds: