COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Invasive nasal swabs may become a thing of the past when it comes to testing for COVID-19.
Researchers with The Ohio State University have developed a rapid breath test that detects COVID-19 within seconds, according to a study in the journal PLOS ONE. Unlike the current nasal swab tests, the breath test is neither invasive nor uncomfortable, according to researchers.
The breathalyzer was tested on 46 patients in the intensive care unit who were on ventilators. Researchers say the test was 88% accurate in initial tests.
“This noninvasive breath test technology can pick up early COVID-19 infection within 72 hours of the onset of respiratory failure, allowing us to rapidly screen patients in a single step and exclude those without COVID-19 on mechanical ventilation,” said lead researcher Dr. Matthew Exline.
OSU researchers have applied to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for emergency use authorization of the breathalyzer technology.