Although it has long been known that they are considered less reliable than molecular, i rapid anti-Covid tests to be carried out at home they can represent one practical and effective tool for a first self-diagnosis, in the presence of symptoms or in case you have come into contact with a positive.
Not only that, since the first of Aprilaccording to current legislation, all students can use do-it-yourself tamponsas an alternative to those of the pharmacy, also to return to class, together with the self-certification of the parents certifying its veracity.
THE benefits of these tests are different. The first, that of being easily availablenot only in the pharmacies but now also in supermarkets and onlinethat of having a low cost and, last but not least, that of being quick and easy to use. In most cases, in fact, they are enough 15 minutes to get the result.
And if until recently there were very few on the market, today i self test for Covid available on the market are now many. How to better orient yourself in the choice? Here are some useful info.
How do they work
The principle of the quick DIY unsanitary tests is the same as the test antigenic carried out in pharmacies to identify the positive cases: the only difference is the method of withdrawal, simpler in home kits precisely because they are designed for non-experts.
In all cases however, rapid unsanitary tests have been studied for recognize the virus by detecting specific SARS-Cov-2 proteinsthe so-called antigens. When antibodies bind specifically to these proteins, they trigger a chemical reaction which allows the test to be colored and therefore to provide the result.
The withdrawal, usually quite simple, can be nasalor carried out with a swab (a cotton swab) that is inserted inside the nostrils, or salivarythrough the use of a small funnel.
Although the principle behind it is always the same, depending on the brand of test chosen, the kit available may be slightly different and it is therefore essential for the correct procedure to refer to the instructions contained within the test. To facilitate the procedure, some kits have a qr code which, when framed with the smartphone, allows you to quickly access a video tutorial which explains how to run the test without errors.
Nasal swabs or salivary tests better?
A frequent doubt concerns the choice of type of self test to be carried out at homeamong those that provide for the nasal or salivary sampling.
Although they have been considered less sensitive than nasal ones and are less commercially available, i salivary tests they can represent a valid alternative especially if they have to be used with i children, for which the nasal swab can be more invasive and annoying.
To obtain a reliable result with salivary kits, however, the sample collection it must be done very carefully. The methods of collection may also vary in this case depending on the kit chosen but a recommendation that is always valid is to proceed with the collection of the sample possibly in the morning or in any case before having eaten or drunk, since the salivary composition can change substantially under certain conditions.
How to know if the rapid tests are certified?
Finally, to be sure of buying a safe product, it is good to keep in mind that the diagnostic tests for Covid-19 are subjected to the directive 98/79 / EC which establishes i essential safety requirementshealth, design and construction that in vitro diagnostic medical devices and their accessories must satisfy.
The quick tests they must therefore always be CE marked and be provided with a declaration of conformity. Next to the CE mark there must be a four-digit code which identifies the entity that has certified the possibility of use by non-professionals. The antigenic tests that reporting only the CE mark without code I am therefore alone professional use.
Of course, you must always keep in mind that, however reliable, rapid tests have limitations and they can provide false negatives in some cases: for this reason, especially in the presence of persistent symptoms, it is always good to opt for more in-depth analyzes.
In the gallery below, one selection of the best rapid anti-Covid tests to buy online.
Source: Vanity Fair