COVID-19 testing has been prevalent since the beginning of the pandemic and can require flu and RSV testing to know which virus someone is dealing with. There is now a single combined test that can diagnose all these infections and help medical providers determine the correct treatment options.
These illnesses share common symptoms:
- COVID-19: The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Individuals may be asymptomatic but can also suffer from mild to severe illness.
- Flu: The flu (or influenza) is a contagious respiratory illness. It impacts the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. It can cause mild to severe infections.
- RSV: the respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, is a common respiratory virus with generally mild cold-like symptoms. RSV is the most common cause of bronchiolitis and pneumonia in children younger than one year.
Medical professionals recommend getting both COVID-19 and flu immunizations if you are eligible for them.
Is the Test Safe and Effective?
This test was approved by the FDA for Emergency Use Authorization after clinical trials. It is a safe and practical option, especially when these various viruses share similar symptoms like cough, fever, and fatigue. A single test is more convenient for patients as it minimizes discomfort and is more convenient to fit into a busy schedule. This combined test also alleviates the amount of time and resources required for medical providers.
How Does the Test Work?
A medical professional performs a single nasal swab for this combined test. A nasal swab takes a cell sample from your nostril or from the nasopharynx, which is the uppermost part of your nose and throat. A laboratory then tests the collected samples to diagnose any infections. This test has high sensitivity and provides accurate and fast results.
Who Should Get Tested?
The following situations call for a COVID-19 test:
- You experience symptoms of COVID-19
- You have had close contact with someone with COVID-19
- Your locality, employer, school, or healthcare provider requests you to be tested
In the case of the flu, you may not need a test depending on your symptoms. For RSV, most adults and older children do not require testing because the virus usually only results in mild illness. Younger children and seniors who are at higher risk should get tested if they show RSV symptoms.
With a large number of shared symptoms between COVID-19, flu, and RSV, testing for all of them can help to determine what type of virus you are experiencing, no matter your immunization status. This allows us to provide you with the appropriate treatment. This has become especially useful since the emergence of COVID-19.
If you are looking to get tested for COVID-19, flu, RSV, or other conditions, call our experts at Advance ER today at (214) 494-8222 to schedule an appointment!