Understanding HCG Levels

Levels of human chorionic gonadotropin hormone (HCG) rise quickly in the first trimester, but HCG levels can vary significantly. Find out why--and what these fluctuations mean.
pregnant belly

PhotoAlto/ Matton

Human chorionic gonadotropin hormone (HCG), also known as beta human chorionic gonadotropin (b-HCG), is one of the most talked-about hormones of pregnancy. We asked Michele Hakakha, M.D., an obstetrician and co-author of Expecting 411, and Elisa Ross, M.D., an ob-gyn at Cleveland Clinic's Hillcrest Hospital, to explain HCG levels and give a thorough explanation of why this hormone is so important during your pregnancy.

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