January 4, 2024
KUALA LUMPUR – VIRAL posts on social media claim that using carbonated drinks instead of saliva for Covid-19 rapid test kits will lead to a positive result.
Is it true that carbonated drinks can test positive for Covid-19?
The Malaysian Medical Device Authority (MDA) said that Covid-19 rapid test kits are designed to to detect the presence of the coronavirus or its components from saliva or nasal and throat swab samples and usually rely on particular molecular markers or antigens associated with Covid-19.
It added that using carbonated drinks as a sample was not a valid scientific technique and could not be trusted.
“Carbonated drinks contain a variety of ingredients but do not have the coronavirus genetic material or markers that can be detected by the test kits,” it said in a statement on Facebook.
MDA chief executive officer Dr Muralitharan Paramasua also said there was no evidence to prove that carbonated drinks can lead to a positive Covid-19 positive.
“This is because using any other liquid aside from the samples specified may contain chemicals that can react to the reagent on the test strip, leading to an inaccurate, invalid and confusing result,” Dr Muralitharan said.
He stressed that all Covid-19 self test kits should only be used with saliva, nasal or throat swab samples and not water, food and drink samples.
“When used correctly, the self test kits can help detect Covid-19 infections.”
MDA also said that the spread of fake information encouraging the misuse of Covid-19 self test kits was irresponsible and a threat to public health.