Abstract
A SIMPLE AND CHEAP DIAGNOSTIC SCREENING PROFILE TO DETECT CORONA VIRUS (COVID 19) AT THE EARLIER THAN EXISTING TESTS.

Muralikrishnan G., M. Vijayasimha* and D. Jayarajan

ABSTRACT

An emergence of novel Corona virus outbreak in China, has become a global threat. In order to overcome this pandemic, medical laboratories across world can play vital role. It is rightly said that medical problems which can not be solved in a clinic can be solved in medical laboratory. There are different types of tests which support diagnosis of a disease. Some of them are screening tests and others are confirmatory tests. The conventional RT-PCR test being done to detects the virus based on RNA as a confirmatory test. The antibody test will detect the body’s response to the virus, being done as a screening test. The former is direct evidence and the latter the indirect evidence. There is shortage of PCR kits , the test is complicated, expensive and time-consuming. The existing antibody test is also reasonably expensive. The serological test will only help screen number of suspected patients in a shorter duration, but is not aimed to be a tool for mass testing as it is expensive as well. Larger number of medical laboratories across India are small comprising about 80%, 18% are mid size laboratories and 2% are reference laboratories. These confirmatory tests are done in either mid size laboratories or reference laboratories. Present price of corona virus tests is approximately Rs 1500, that include screening tests costing Rs 500 and the confirmatory tests costing Rs 1000, in many of developing countries. Recent studies conducted on Covid patients showed simple existing lab tests such as Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR) and C-Reactive Protein (CRP) levels were raised and Differential Leukocyte Count (DLC), revealed lymphocytopenia in Covid patients. Therefore these tests can be used to screen Covid patients, which cost less than Rs 100, are reliable and can be used for screening large number of patients. There is great demand for the screening tests for Covid, worldwide and these can be used as screening tests. The best way to prevent and slow down transmission is to diagnose corona virus at the earliest to minimize its affect.

Keywords: Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR); C-Reactive Protein (CRP); Differntial Leukocyte Count (DLC); Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).


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