Archive for April, 2015

Rapid Diagnostic Tests for Malaria

Malaria is a serious and sometimes lethal disease caused by a parasite. The parasite infects certain mosquitos, which can later mosquito-719613_640transmit the disease to humans while feeding on them. The disease is much more common in South Asia and Africa. About 1,500–2,000 cases of malaria are reported every year in America, and almost all are in people who have recently traveled.  The disease now occurs in more than 90 countries worldwide, and it is estimated that there are over 500 million clinical cases and 2.7 million malaria-caused deaths per year.

Symptoms of malaria include fever, chills, nausea and sweating. Although clinically indistinguishable from many other diseases, malaria is a curable disease if the patient has access to an early diagnosis and treatment.

A malaria rapid diagnostic test (RDT) can aid in the diagnosis of malaria by identifying a presence of malaria antigens in the human blood. It can detect Plasmodium falciparum or one of the other three species of human malaria, providing results in 15-20 minutes. Due to the variation in parasite species, different RDTs may be appropriate in different settings. All positive RDTs should be followed by microscopy.

For more information about Malaria Rapid Tests click here or please contact our Customer Service Representatives at 818-591-3030.

Detecting Pregnancy with HCG Tests

embryo-159691__180A human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) test is done to check for the presence of HCG in blood or urine. The hormone is produced in the early stages of pregnancy (as early as ten days after conception). Generally, blood tests are more sensitive than urine tests and can therefore be done earlier with the same level of accuracy. If the first test result is negative but a pregnancy is still suspected, the test should be retaken about a week later. Because HCG rises rapidly, a negative result can turn positive within this time period.

Results from the test can also help determine and monitor an abnormality of the pregnancy. For example, low HCG levels during a pregnancy can suggest an ectopic pregnancy or even miscarriage. High HCG levels can indicate twins or triplets.

An HCG test is often used to screen for pregnancy if a woman is about to undergo a medical treatment or test that can potentially harm a fetus, such as an operation or taking certain drugs. HCG tests are designed for rapid determination, so doctors and surgeons can detect a pregnancy even before performing any emergency treatments.

At RapidTest, we offer a range of accurate, fast pregnancy tests in cassette and strip formats.