Omicron variant ‘stealth’ ahead of Covid-19 rapid tests?

Statistically, the “stealth” variant of Omicron dominates the cases detected in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

The Hanoi Ministry of Health recently sequenced viral genes in samples from 109 patients and recorded 80 percent of infections with the Omicron variant; the subvariant BA.2 — aka the “stealth” Omicon variant — predominated.

According to the association. Associate Professor. Currently, rapid tests are still available to test for Covid-19, either the Omicron or the Delta variant.

According to a study by Umass Chan (using data from more than 5,000 patients who had undergone home antigen testing and PCR), 82% of Delta-infected people and 92% of Omicron-infected people had test results. Experience. Experience. positive. When the PCR test is also positive, a home antigen test is done.

There are 3 reasons why PGS Chau develops symptoms when multiple rapid test results are negative:

First, rapid tests are not as sensitive as PCR, so the concentration of virus in the body must be high to give a positive result. If the sample was collected during the incubation period of exposure to the source of viral infection, but the viral load in the body is low. At the time, rapid tests could give negative results because the amount of virus was not high enough for a test kit to detect.

Second, when you test it yourself, there may be errors in operation, sampling techniques, and procedures. In many cases, the sampling location was incorrect, such as instructions, fear of pain, or inexperience of the sampling staff.

Third, the quality of test kits can also affect test results. At present, there are many kinds of test kits on the market, each with different sensitivities, not to mention the existence of counterfeit and shoddy products, resulting in inaccurate test results.

In situations of PCR overload and long wait times for results, rapid home testing remains a useful tool for identifying infection.

Dr. Nguyen Quoc Thai, Center for Tropical Diseases, Baimei Hospital also holds the same view, saying that the essence of rapid testing is to look for antigens in the virus envelope, not the surface antigens of the virus.

The emerging variant now only changes the S protein on the surface of the virus, leaving the virus’s envelope intact, so the rapid test is still valid for “stealthy” Omicron or Omicron variants. . .

People taking a quick home test get misleading results, most likely due to incorrect sampling techniques. The Thai doctor said that if the sample is not collected correctly, there will be a feeling of “watery eyes and runny nose”, but it should not be taken directly outside the nose.

From the perspective of clinical manifestations, the survey shows that Omicron spreads rapidly, but the hospitalization rate and the number of severe cases are only 1/10 of the previous ones.

Compared with symptoms, the number of Omicron cases with symptoms is higher than that of previous strains, up to 50-60%, but the main symptoms are cough, fever, sore throat, which can be treated at home. In Delta, only about 20% of people have symptoms, but many have severe symptoms, with high rates of hospitalization and intensive care.

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