Rapid Covid Test: Explained science behind how it works to detect virus in our system

The world has been using different kinds of COVID-19 tests for a year now, and yet its effectiveness sounds questionable to some people! We are often intrigued to know how all these tests work, especially the rapid Covid test. Yes, since we get the antigen rapid test results in a day, it is kind of fascinating to know what is the science behind it. How did our scientists come up with such a rapid solution for testing this deadly virus? Well, let us get a brief explanation of this query here.

Rapid Covid Tests: Know How It Works

The rapid antigen tests for COVID-19 are performed using testing kits made by different pharmaceutical companies. As of a report released by the ICMR in July 2021, India has used as many as 123 rapid Covid test kits available from all over the world. However, only a few of them have turned out to be highly effective. And one must choose labs like SpiceHealth that are using the most effective ones. Yes, not all laboratories are complying with the same testing kit. But here is how all the kits work.

The Complete Procedure of Rapid Tests For COVID-19

The Rapid Covid test is almost a three-step test procedure, which is why this test gives the fastest results of all the tests available. Also, it does not require any specific instrument or medical equipment for examination.

●    Sample Collection

The lab technicians take the nasal or throat swab as the sample for testing the presence of Coronavirus in our system.

●    Testing The Sample With A Kit

The sample then goes to the lab, where the technicians put the sample in a solution and let it absorb. Once done, they put the liquid in the test cartridge used for the rapid Covid test. If it changes its colour from pink to yellow, it means the virus is present in the system in high concentration. This process detects the proteins on the surface of the virus.

●    Time Taken In The Procedure

It takes around 5-10 minutes to change colour and tell the difference. That is why we can get the test results in a day.

Stated Limitations of Rapid Tests

Since the rapid Covid test detects protein levels on the surface of the virus, it is likely to miss out on a low concentration of the virus. Yes, sometimes, a body may take some time to develop the virus for the testing kit to be able to detect it.

Can We Do Antigen Tests At Home?

The process of this rapid antigen test resembles the home pregnancy test to a great extent. Some people keep asking whether it is possible to take the test at home. While the government is releasing kits that are made for self-use at home, it is not a good choice for many reasons.

  • Getting the sample is not just difficult but also a bit riskier. One can poke the device inside their nose and mouth and cause bleeding.
  • Unlike pregnancy tests, rapid Covid tests are a bit hurtful. Taking the swab from within the nose or mouth is not an easy task, after all!
  • Finding the best and most accurate kit is not possible everywhere in the city. So, the best option is to call in an expert lab technician and let him do his job!

This discussion brings us to the conclusion that the effectiveness of the rapid Covid test depends highly upon the kit used by the laboratory. Therefore, one must choose the best one in the city to get close results. Our awareness and responsible attitude can get us through this pandemic. Get tested whenever it feels necessary!