Today, the whole world is suffering and threatened with this newly discovered disease, the COVID-19. People who are infected with the coronavirus are showing symptoms that are almost similar to having colds or flu.
Sadly, many are unaware that they are already infected with the virus as they mistakenly identify it as simple flu. The lack of correct information about the disease caused rapid transmission in many countries, which caused economic instability.
Thousands of people died from different countries because they were not cured right away. Fortunately, the production of testing kits was expedited to help in identifying infected people. Some of these testing kits can be purchased online. However, to make sure that you will get an accurate result, you must know what the testing kits that work effectively are. These are five COVID-19 testing kits approved by the FDA (The Food and Drug Administration).
Two Types Of Tests For COVID-19
Two different types of tests can be done to know if you are diagnosed with COVID-19. These are antibody tests and viral tests. Though it gives you the same result, whether you’re infected or not, it works differently, and it can also affect the accuracy of the test results.
Kyodo News stated that the Japanese government agrees to use antibody test kits because it is easier and fast to use. A person who is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 does not need to be tested in the lab, unlike the usual viral test. This antibody test can be a hope to lower the number of dead people due to coronavirus.
The United States Food and Drug Administration also approves antibody testing provided that the kits’ manufacturers are authorized according to the set guidelines. The laboratory that will be used to examine the samples must be qualified as well.
What Is An Antibody Test?
It is a test that uses your blood to look for the developed antibodies that you had from a previous viral infection. Antibodies are proteins produced when your body reacts to a harmful substance that causes infections. Nowadays, many health professionals use a coronavirus ELISA kit (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) to look for antibodies.
It can diagnose several diseases such as HIV, rotavirus, zika virus, syphilis, pernicious anemia, and now coronavirus. However, the accuracy of the result from this test is low for coronavirus. This kind of test requires timing, and when someone just got COVID-19 infection, the antibodies may not be produced right away. Therefore if you want to know if you are currently infected with coronavirus, you have to perform viral tests.
FDA Approved Antibody Test Kits
The United States Food and Drug Administration published the Emergency Use Authorizations guidelines on the 27th day of May of 2020. This article consists of guidelines on how to get authorization in manufacturing COVID-19 medical devices and personal protective equipment. FDA also approves some test kits that can be used, provided that it qualifies under the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) guidelines.
According to the United States Food and Drug Administration, one of the recommended test kits as of today is the PCR test. The Laboratory Corporation of America (LabCorp) was authorized to conduct testing of samples collected by the patients at home using the Pixel COVID-19 test home collection kit. The kit includes a Q-tip-style cotton swab for the person who experiences the symptoms of the said disease. The sample is then shipped to LabCorp’s authorized laboratories to examine the sample.
It is important only to use authorized test kits. You can check more of the approved test kits and manufacturers on the U.S Food and Drug Administration website. If you are a manufacturer or someone planning to distribute some of these test kits, make sure that you file a request following the guidelines listed on the website.
When Should You Be Tested?
Remember that these tests are not necessary for everyone to see if you are infected with COVID-19 or not. Before you decide to be tested, watch out for coronavirus symptoms. Observe the changes in your body if the symptoms are changing from mild to severe. Some people are experiencing symptoms such as dry cough and fever that have recovered at home.
The Food and Drug Administration is advising people to be aware of fraudulent coronavirus tests, treatments, and vaccines. There are many right now who are staying at home to avoid the infection, but it is still concerning to think that some are tempted to purchase these products. Remember that the WHO has not yet released any vaccine or cure for COVID-19. Therefore, always check the FDA website for approved products you can use for COVID-19 before buying any testing kits or products that claim to cure, help diagnose, and prevent coronavirus.