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The COVID pandemic has changed the world, especially the medical industry. Many discoveries have been made to ensure the safety of the people. New medical equipment, such as a rapid antigen test kit, has been made to determine the presence of the coronavirus in people quickly. 

Rapid antigen test kits have gained popularity and become a household name since the pandemic. Now, this kit is used in many parts of the world for detecting the COVID-19 virus. 

Whether you are a medical professional or not, it is important to know about this test and how to use the covid 19 antigen saliva test kit. Read this article to learn everything more about the rapid antigen test kit.

What Is a Rapid Antigen Test Kit?

The rapid antigen test kit, as the name suggests, is a convenient and rapid immunochromatographic assay used for qualitatively detecting the COVID-19 virus. To perform this test, a nasal or salivary swab is taken from patients who show symptoms of the virus. This test kit is designed to quickly differentiate the COVID virus from other viral infections. It distinguishes suspected COVID patients from those who have respiratory infections. 

A rapid antigen test kit is designed to be used at home, too. However, asymptomatic people are advised not to take this test. This test is not a confirmatory test but a preliminary test. The confirmation will be done only after the RT-PCR test is conducted. 

RT-PCR, also known as a molecular test, is often done after the antigen test to confirm the presence of the coronavirus. This test determines the virus’s genetic material using a technique called reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (PCR). A fluid sample is taken with a throat or nasal swab and sent for further testing. RT-PCR is an accurate test if performed properly by a healthcare professional.

How Does The Rapid Antigen Test Work?

With the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to know how rapid antigen tests work and how to use covid 19 antigen saliva test kit. Here is how it works: 

For a nasal rapid antigen test, a sterile swab is injected into the patient’s nose to reach the surface of the posterior nasopharynx. Next, the swab is rotated inside the nostril three to four times before being taken out. An extraction buffer tube is then used to store the swab. The swab is then moved at least five to six times whilst the buffer tube is squeezed. The swab is removed after the liquid has been extracted by squeezing the tube’s side. The nozzle cap is then firmly pressed onto the tube. The drops of the extracted sample are kept in the specimen well of the testing device. 

Another type of rapid antigen test is saliva rapid antigen test. This diagnostic test is used to detect the presence of the specific antigen for COVID-19 in a person’s saliva. The test works by collecting a small sample of saliva from the person being tested. The saliva is then placed on a test strip or cassette that contains a sample collection pad and a test device. The test device contains specific antibodies that will bind to the antigen of interest if it is present in the saliva sample.

Once the saliva sample is applied to the test device, it is left to incubate for a certain period of time (usually around 15 minutes) to allow the antibodies to bind to any antigens present. After the incubation period, the test device is read to determine if the antigen is present.

Saliva antigen test is considered as a less invasive test than nasal or throat swabs. Also, it is easy to collect and the test is considered to be highly accurate. They are widely used to detect COVID-19.

For both tests, it takes around 15 minutes to give the result. Also, the test result should be read within 30 minutes because, after that, it may give the wrong result.

How To Interpret The Test Result

Suppose you are performing a test at home; then you should know how to use COVID-19 antigen saliva test kit and how to interpret the result. Once you are done with the process of the test, then, after 15 minutes, you can check for the result. 

If a clear pink color control band (C) and a detectable band (T) appear, it indicates a positive result for coronavirus. However, this test is not completely true until RT-PCR is done to confirm it. Therefore, if the antigen test shows the presence of coronavirus, then it is recommended to get RT-PCR done or consult the doctor for advice. 

If only a pink-coloured control band appears, it indicates negative coronavirus results. However, if you have consistent symptoms despite a negative antigen test result, get the RT-PCR done for confirmation. This is because rapid antigen tests may not always show the right result.

If no lines appear in the control region, something is wrong with the kit, and you should replace it.

Dexcon | Leading Medical Device and PPE Supplier in Australia

The use of rapid antigen test kits has resulted in quick screening of COVID-19 patients and played a crucial role in dealing with the virus. If you need PPE and medical supplies, including rapid antigen test kits, we have now at Dexcon. Contact us here. We will provide you with the best medical equipment and supplies at an affordable price.