The PCR test is an integral part of everyday life in the corona pandemic. With this test method, it was possible to reliably prove to millions of people that they have been infected with the coronavirus. Everything you need to know about the test procedure, read here.
The PCR test (also called laboratory test) is the gold standard among corona tests. Using a PCR test, it is possible to reliably detect whether pathogens are present in a sample from the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract.
The PCR test is a standard procedure in the diagnosis of viruses. The test is based on the so-called polymerase chain reaction (PCR). In the process, hereditary material of the virus is multiplied. This makes it possible to detect viruses, even if only a few pathogens are present. The PCR test therefore has a high sensitivity – it detects the virus with a high accuracy. In addition, only the genetic material of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is specifically duplicated. The test thus has a high specificity, i.e. it detects exactly the desired virus.
The PCR test is considered the most reliable procedure to clarify the suspicion of acute infection with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Due to the currently high number of infections, prioritizations are made depending on the available test capacities and certain groups of people are preferably tested (see question “Who is entitled to a PCR test and who should be tested?“). The decision as to whether a PCR test is carried out is made by the doctor or the health authority.
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