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PCR vs Antigen Testing: Which COVID-19 Test Is Right For Me?

Views: 0     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2022-12-23      Origin: Site

Testing for COVID-19 has become part of the new normal. Maybe you have symptoms and wonder if it's COVID-19.Or you are planning to travel and need to show a negative test result.Whatever your reason for testing, you may be wondering about PCR vs.antigen testing and which type is right for you.Molecular tests, including polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests, are more accurate.But they usually go through a lab, so it takes longer to get results.Antigen tests (also called rapid tests) are less accurate, but you can do the test at home and get results in about 15 minutes. Read more to decide which type is right for you.

How are PCR and other molecular tests performed? RDT-Antigen-Results

Molecular tests use a laboratory process to look for the genetic material of the virus that causes COVID-19.PCR and other molecular tests can detect even small amounts of virus, so false negative results are rare.You can get a PCR test at health clinics, pharmacies, and other designated testing locations.They usually involve nasal swabs, but throat swabs or saliva samples can also be used.After the sample is collected, it is sent to a laboratory for processing.It usually takes 1 to 7 days for PCR test results to be available.There are also home collection PCR kits that you can use to send samples to the lab by mail.

Can you get a same-day PCR test?

If you want a PCR test but need the results immediately, same-day PCR testing locations can provide results within hours.Small diagnostic or urgent care clinics may offer same-day PCR testing.You can search online for same day PCR testing near you.Another option is a rapid molecular test called ID NOW.This test is not as sensitive as a laboratory PCR test,but more sensitive than an antigen test.Available at some pharmacies,you can get results on site in as little as 15 minutes.