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A viral respiratory infection test is done to diagnose certain viral infections of the respiratory system. The respiratory system includes the nose, throat, windpipe, and lungs. In this test, a sample of the genetic material from the back of your nose and throat, or the nasopharynx, is collected and sent to a lab for testing. The results will show whether a virus is causing your infection. It will also help your health care provider plan for your treatment.
You do not have to prepare for this test.
This test checks for the presence of a virus in your respiratory system. It checks a sample for the genetic material that makes up the virus (viral genetic material). Sometimes, the test is also used to find bacteria.
A fluid sample from the back of your nose and throat is collected using a swab that is attached to a metal or plastic wire.
If you have a deviated septum or blockage, it can make it hard to collect the specimen from one nostril. In this case, your health care provider will use the same swab to collect the specimen from the other nostril.
For all methods used, the collected sample will be placed into a culture tube, labeled with your name, and sent to the lab for testing.
Your test results will be reported as either positive or negative.
Talk with your health care provider about what your results mean. In some cases, your health care provider may do more testing to confirm the results.
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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