Dr Mohibullah Salih
Abstract: Introduction: The recent outbreaks of human corona virus infections, at the beginning of 12th century has shown the prominent roles of rapid and accurate diagnostic technologies, to contain the emerging and re-emerging pandemics. Despite the development of specific and sensitive point of care tests & serological immunoassays, RT-PCR still remain the gold standard performed on respiratory specimens for diagnosis of COVID-19. Objectives: Recent diagnostic techniques for diagnosing COVID-19. Method and materials: In this review of articles, at first, about 92 articles of COVID-19 that were published before July 21, 2020, were studied. After excluding repeated issues, 20 relevant articles were selected for this research. Those articles that were focusing clinical features, treatment & prevention, were excluded. The articles were searched in NCBI, PubMed, Elsevier & Google scholar engines. Meanwhile, recent data about diagnosing COVID-19 were taken from CDC, WHO & Uptodate as well. Results: In this review we found that there is no simple, fast, reliable, specific, sensitive, cost-effective and widely available test for diagnosing COVID-19. Up to now, RT-PCR is the gold standard for definitive diagnosing of COVID-19. Rapid serological tests constitute second diagnostic tests, which are widely available, cost-effective, point of care tests. CT- scan, however if used with RT-PCR, is very accurate in asymptomatic patients even if RT-PCR is negative. The new generation, simple, cost-effective, point of care, specific and sensitive tests are greatly developing for diagnosing COVID-19.
Keywords: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, Diagnostic approach, Diagnostic challenges, Serology