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COVID-19: Tests, Symptoms, Risk Factors and Prevention

COVID-19: Tests, Symptoms, Risk Factors and Prevention

August 5, 2021

Corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a highly infectious disease caused by acute respiratory syndrome Corona virus 2(SARS-CoV-2). An effective way of preventing and halting the spread of this virus is an early and accurate screening of the population that is infected and isolating them from the public.

COVID-19 Tests

COVID-19 testing in Richmond, TX, is done to find out whether you are currently infected with SARS-CoV-2. In addition, testing is done if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus.

Viral testing from the lower or upper respiratory tract is the reference standard recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for making a definitive COVID-19 diagnosis.

Some approved COVID-19 tests are:

  • Molecular (PCR) Test

A lab technique called Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) is used to detect genetic materials of the virus. A fluid sample may be collected from the back of the nose by inserting a long nasal swab (nasopharyngeal swab) or a short nasal swab(mid-turbinate swab) into the nostril.

The patient may also spit into a tube to produce a saliva sample or have a long swab (oropharyngeal swab) inserted into the back of the throat for fluid samples. If the sample is analyzed onsite, the results may be available in minutes. However, it may take a longer time if sent to a lab where test processing delays.

  • Rapid Test Or Antigen Test

This is a COVID-19 test that detects protein fragments that are specific to the Corona virus. A long nasal swab is used to get the fluid sample for testing. The results are produced in minutes.

  • Antibody Test

This is a blood test where antibodies in your blood indicate the virus’s previous infection. It is not a diagnostic test for COVID-19 since it can take 1-3 weeks after infection for your body to make antibodies.

This test tells you whether you have had a Corona virus infection before. It is a test used to help specialists learn more about those who have already had the virus.

  • Chest X-Ray

Digital chest radiography is used as a discriminatory element in conjunction with viral testing and clinical examinations. Chest x-rays help diagnose patients with COVID-19 as some lung disease patterns on imaging studies are common with COVID-19. Digital x-rays in Richmond, TX, are used to supplement medical decision-making and subsequent management.

Advantages of chest x-ray imaging include the following:

  • Availability
  • Faster imaging time enabling quick screenings of patients
  • Low cost
  • Highly portable
  • Easy to set up even in isolation wards

Symptoms of COVID-19

Here are some of the signs to be on the lookout for:

  • Fever or chills
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cough
  • New Loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Phlegm or mucus
  • Fatigue
  • Headache

Safety Strategies at a COVID-19 Urgent Care Testing

Safety concerns of local clinics and hospitals may hinder you from going to urgent care for COVID-19 testing. At our clinic, we have the following safety strategies:

  • The staff is screened for temperature and other symptoms before every work shift
  • The staff and patients must wear masks or face shields to reduce the risk of transmission
  • The staff receives additional testing and education on personal protective equipment
  • Tele-health services are used to screen patients and reduce staff-patient interactions
  • Cleaning and decontamination practices are enhanced
  • The number of people in the clinic at any one time is controlled to maintain social distance
  • Patients with COVID-19 symptoms are separated from asymptomatic patients
  • We equip some working areas with Plexiglas barriers
  • Our waiting rooms have been re-arranged to help maintain social distancing
  • Unnecessary items like toys, magazines, and pamphlets have been removed to prevent the spread of the virus through them as different patients touch them frequently

Risk Factors of Corona Virus

Rush to an urgent care near you if you notice symptoms of COVID-19 and you have some of the health conditions below.

  • Sickle cell disease
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Obesity
  • Organ transplant that has caused a weakened immune system
  • Heart conditions like heart failure or coronary artery disease

Corona Virus Prevention

  • Get vaccinated
  • Cover your mouth and nose in public or around an infected person
  • Wash hands with soap and water often or use an alcohol-based sanitizer
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces often touched like doorknobs, sinks, faucets, light switches, or working surfaces
  • Do not touch your face
  • Practice social distancing

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