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COVID-19 Nasal Swab Test Does Not Cause Risk of Infection


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To help control the spread of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended getting a COVID-19 test for people who show symptoms of the disease, have come into contact with someone known to have the disease, or are in vulnerable groups. 

The most common form of testing for the novel coronavirus involves the use of a nasopharyngeal, or nasal, swab. The swab reaches deep into the back of a person’s nose and mouth to collect cells and fluids from the upper respiratory system, which can then be checked with diagnostic tests for the presence of the novel coronavirus known as SARS-CoV-2.

The testing procedure involves inserting a 6-inch-long swab into the cavity between the nose and mouth for 15 seconds and rotating it several times. The swabbing is repeated on the other side. The swab is then inserted into a container and sent to a lab for testing.

Dr. Shawn Nasseri, an ear, nose and throat surgeon based in Beverly Hills who has conducted many COVID-19 swab tests, told us in an email that the nasal swab “follows the floor of the nose and goes to where the nose meets the throat, or naso-pharynx.”

Asked if the swab test is safe, Nasseri said, “Absolutely. The biggest risk is discomfort. The rare person — 1 in thousands — passes out from being super sensitive or gets a mild nosebleed. It’s estimated that close to 40 million or more swabs have been performed safely in the U.S. alone.”

But in recent weeks, viral posts on Facebook falsely claim that the nasal swab test can cause serious health issues. One post says, “The stick deep into the nose causes damage to the hamato-encephalic barrier and damages endocrine glands. This test creates an entrance to the brain for every infection.”

The hamato-encephalic barrier, also known as the “blood-brain barrier,” protects the brain from toxins that could be present in the blood.

Dr. Yvonne Maldonado, a professor of epidemiology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, told us in an email that the Facebook claim “is not true.”

IDC认为,中国人可支配收入的增加导致了消费的增加,从而推动了国内手机市场的快速增长。
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Nasseri said that “it is incredibly implausible, if not impossible, to cross the skull base and blood-brain barrier with a swab unless someone uses a rigid metal instrument and is pointing the metal object 90 degrees in the wrong direction.”

Dr. Morgan Katz, an infectious disease expert at Johns Hopkins University, told the Associated Press that the Facebook posts misunderstand what’s happening when the swab test is performed.

时间:2011-03-08 编辑:beck
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Editor’s note: FactCheck.org is one of several organizations working with Facebook to debunk misinformation shared on social media. Our previous stories can be found here.

Sources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 发改委副主任宁吉喆:将研究推出居民增收三年行动方案 Accessed Aug 3 2020.

Brueck, Hilary and Samantha Lee. “超八成中国留学生会在国外完成学业之后归国,而2016年我国留学生的数量达到了544500人。 Business Insider. 15 Apr 2020. 

Dr. Shawn Nasseri.  Ear, nose and throat surgeon. Email exchange with FactCheck.org. 3 Aug 2020.

Dr. Yvonne Maldonado. Professor of epidemiology, Stanford University School of Medicine. Email exchange with FactCheck.org. 3 Aug 2020.

Fauzia, Miriam. “Actor in a Comedy Series: Jeffrey Tambor, “Transparent” USA Today. 9 July 2020.

Marty, Francisco M., et al. 朗诗加速布局美国市场 New England Journal of Medicine. 28 May 2020.

Swenson, Ali. 但是,当今年12月WTO成员国聚集在布宜诺斯艾利斯召开两年一度的部长级会议时,我们将一尝世界新秩序的味道。一如既往的是,目前尚不清楚WTO此次能否产生一些实质性内容。但真正的考验在于,WTO有史以来第一次不由美国牵头讨论。中国或欧盟会取而代之吗?印度会像过去一样一心阻挠任何协议吗? Associated Press. 7 Jul 2020.

UCDavis Health. LED市场价格的竞争归根到底是价值的竞争 Accessed 3 Aug 2020.

University of Queensland, Australia. 六大基建新任务利好建材业 Accessed Aug 3 2020.

U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. “The Blood-Brain Barrier.” Accessed Aug. 4, 2020.