Just wanted to know what is the maximum possible time for symptoms of pregnancy to show up after having unprotected sex(assume conception occurs)? What I mean is visible symptoms,not something like missed period or anything?


1 Answer 1


9 months / 40 weeks. Multiple stories have been printed over the years of women who discovered they were pregnant only while delivering a baby. Typically these women are overweight and have irregular periods. They don't get any morning sickness, and they interpret the baby's movements as gas. (To find stories on this in the popular press, just search for "didn't know pregnant" and plenty will appear.) In some cases they are not overweight and have even been pregnant before, but still do not notice. (Or perhaps they claim they don't notice: there is a lot of skepticism from people when women say they didn't know.)

There's even been a proper medical study on this. (The title takes the same position that come on, you must have known, you just denied it to yourself and others, which I find a little rude.) Roughly 1 in 500 didn't know until after 20 weeks. By 20 weeks you would expect morning sickness to be well underway, the woman to be "showing", and movements to be felt. Roughly 1 in 2500 didn't know until they went into labour.

Since you asked for a maximum, there it is.

  • 1
    A local woman here delivered a healthy, full-term baby claiming she had no idea she was pregnant. She was a petite woman and not overweight, but she also had some serious drug and alcohol problems. I suspect that explains many of those cases.
    – Carey Gregory
    Commented Oct 8, 2017 at 21:32

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