Thursday , February 9 2023
What is a pcr test

What is Rapid PCR Test and how is it done?

The rapid PCR test is a credible and accurate test that is used to detect the presence of Coronavirus in the human body. The results drawn by the test specifies whether the person’s body has the COVID19 virus or not. A positive result is a sign that you probably have COVID whereas the negative results tell you did not have symptoms of COVID in your body when the diagnosis was done.

What does the PCR test mean?

PCR is an acronym for a polymerase chain reaction. The PCR test diagnoses and detects the presence of genetic material of foreign organisms, for example bacteria or viruses. Moreover, the test can also detect the remaining fragments of the infectious virus even after you’ve recovered.

What does the Rapid PCR test for COVID19 mean?

The Rapid PCR test diagnoses the upper respiratory system of a body to spot the genetic RNA material of the virus responsible for COVID19, SARS-CoV-2. The mechanism of the PCR test is that it proliferates the tiny volume of RNA from the foreign organism into DNA, which is further mutated until the SARS-COV-2 is detected if it is present. The Rapid PCR diagnosis has been the infallible and standard test for detecting Coronavirus since it last got authorization back in 2019.

When should one consider taking the Rapid PCR test?

The doctors and healthcare personnel recommendpeople to undertake the Rapid PCRfor COVID19 in case they are developing or showing the following symptoms:

  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Experiencing difficulty in breathing
  • Vomiting or nausea
  • An ache in the stomach or the body
  • Fatigue
  • Losing the taste or developing an inability to smell
  • Running nose or cold
  • Diarrhoea

However, it is to be noted that showing these symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have COVID. Not all COVID19 affected people show the symptoms as listed. Hence it is recommended that you consult with your doctor if you’ve not been feeling well.

Also Read: COVID-19 Care Essentials Everyone Should Own

What is the test procedure to detect SARS-COV-2?

The Rapid PCR test entails three simple steps which are as follows:

  1. Collection of sample:

Firstly, the healthcare person collects the virus material entrapped into the mucus of your nose by using a nose swab. The swab is the soft material on the tip of the long stick that enters your nose. Two types of nose swabs are often used to collect samples:

  1. Nasal swabs: These swabs accumulate samples from the immediate inside portion of your nose.
  2. Nasopharyngeal swabs: These swabs collect samples by going deeper into the nostril cavity.

One of these two swabs is used to effectively collect the sufficient sample for the Rapid PCR test to detect SARS-COV-2. After the sample is collected, it is transferred into a tube and then sent to a lab.

  1. Genetic material extraction:

As the scientists in the laboratory receive the sample, they extract the genetic RNA material of the virus from other materials present in the sample.

  1. PCR of sample:

This is the final step wherein the virus detection is emphasized by using special enzymes, chemicals, and a thermal cycler machine. Several cycles of heating and cooling are conducted on the sample to increase the genetic RNA material of the virus in a tube.

After millions of times, the cycles have been repeated, numerous copies of a tiny amount of RNA material of SARS-COV-2 multiplied in test tubes. The presence of one of the chemicals radiates off a fluorescent light if the SARS-COV-2 virus exists in the sample.

Moreover, once the genetic material is amplified to a good extent, the Rapid PCR machine catches this signal. Finally, to decide whether the test is positive or negative, scientists use special software to translate the signals.

What does the COVID PCR test indicate?

  • If the result turns out positive:

The positive test result simply indicates that you are probably suffering from SARS-COV-2. However, the infection could be asymptomatic which means that if you don’t show any symptoms, you could be infected.

But if you are showing symptoms, then it is COVID. Most of the time with medical care at home, people with mild symptoms can easily recover. Therefore, it is better that you consult your doctor if your situation worsens, or you have any other doubts.

  • If the result turns out negative:

In this case, it means that you weren’t infected with Coronavirus at the time the sample was collected. However, it doesn’t guarantee that you didn’t have COVID, since there are chances that you may be infected with it, but the Rapid PCR test may not spot that. It happens when you have recently been in close contact with a COVID infected person after the sample collection.


Therapid PCR test is the quickest and accurate way to track and detect the COVID19 virus which is SARS-COV-2. In case you are showing any symptoms of COVID, then it is recommended to consult your local healthcare provider or doctor to know from where you can take a PCR test and get the results.