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I'm having irregular periods. Could I be pregnant? #414/6
Okay, I once was on birth control and I've been off a year now, and my period was messed up. I had sex 8 days after my period and  now it's 5 days after I had sex and no period. Could I be pregnant?

You definitely could be pregnant.  Several questions:

1.      Did you have intercourse 8 days after your period began or after your period ended?

2.      Have you ever been pregnant?

3.      If you have been pregnant (or even if you have not), have you had any symptoms of pregnancy?

I would suggest that you do a home pregnancy test at once and advise me the result.  In the meantime, consider using condoms every time you the intercourse until you know the results of your pregnancy test.  This could prevent a future pregnancy if you are not already pregnant.

Please help me by answering the 3 questions above.

"Can I be pregnant?"

The answer to this for almost any sexually active woman in her reproductive years is: YES!


·              A woman can become pregnant if she had had intercourse while still on her period ? even if she uses emergency contraceptive pills.

·              A woman can become pregnant using Depo-Provera injections perfectly.

·              A woman can become pregnant after having had tubal sterilization.

·              A woman can become pregnant after her husband/partner has had a vasectomy.

·              A young teenager can become pregnant before she has her first period.

·              A fully breastfeeding woman can ovulate and become pregnant in the first 6 postpartum months even if she has not had a menstrual period.


You get the point!  Reproductive age women who have

penis-in-vagina intercourse can become pregnant.





If there is any possibility that you are NOW pregnant and that you would carry your pregnancy to term, several recommendations:

  1. Stop drinking at all if you drink alcoholic beverages.
  2. Go to a pharmacy and get prenatal vitamins, the most important of which is folic acid (folate).
  3. Make an appointment to both confirm your pregnancy and start prenatal care (if you plan to carry this pregnancy to term).
  4. Stop smoking, if you are smoking.
  5. Eat healthy foods?you will be eating for two people.
  6. Use condoms if at any risk for an infection.




















Key Words:  birth control, period, sex, pregnant 

Robert A. Hatcher MD, MPH
Emeritus Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Emory University School of Medicine
Atlanta, GA

The directors and owners of this website and any publications and information concerning health matters offered here advise a person with a particular problem to consult a primary-care clinician or a specialist in obstetrics, gynecology, or urology (depending on the problem or the contraceptive) as well as the product package insert and other references before diagnosing, managing, or treating the problem.
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