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Acta Paediatr . Saliva is inferior to nose and throat swabs for SARS-CoV-2 detection in children

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  • Acta Paediatr . Saliva is inferior to nose and throat swabs for SARS-CoV-2 detection in children


    Acta Paediatr


    . 2021 Jul 29.
    doi: 10.1111/apa.16049. Online ahead of print.
    Saliva is inferior to nose and throat swabs for SARS-CoV-2 detection in children


    Marie-Louise von Linstow 1 , Alexandra Kruse 2 , Nikolai Kirkby 3 , Lillian Marie S√łes 4 , Ulrikka Nygaard 1 , Anja Poulsen 1



    Affiliations

    Abstract

    It is important to identify children and adolescents infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), as they are often asymptomatic and may unintentionally spread the virus. However, information on the best sampling methods are limited. Most analyse nose and throat swabs with real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), but these tests are uncomfortable and young children may not co-operate, increasing sub-optimal sample collection and false-negative results. Detecting SARS-CoV-2 in adult saliva, using RT-PCR1,2 has shown promise. However, young children struggle to produce saliva spontaneously and there have been conflicting results about using this method for children.3,4 In contrast, oral swabs cause minimal discomfort, do not generate aerosols, collect adequate viral material5 and can be used by parents or day care staff without personal protective equipment.


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