Close to a year into the Covid 19 pandemic and a couple of test regimes to check whether you are positive or negative of Corona virus, Testing was the only way to rein in the spread. As the year 2020 ends, the hope of a vaccine has pulled humanity out of pessimism. A second strain is at the door, maybe a third one too, more infectious than the first one. An easy testing tool that addresses our olfactory senses may work as an alternative testing options preceding Anitgens and RT-PCR testing regimes. The former has a result span of 15-20 mins at best and the latter result took at least 4-8 hrs for a report. Till date 1,740,390 deaths from Corona virus in the world have been reported to WHO. India has reported 1,47,379 deaths till Decemeber 26, 2020.
Anosmic Covid 19 smell tester claims of not just ease of testing but a host of other accompanying benefits like cost effectiveness, non invasive, accurate and can be used at home. It can also be effectively used in difficult to reach geographical locations. Spray some on your wrist and try smelling or a nasal inhaler can do the job as well. If you can't smell anything of the otherwise stong and pungent odour, its time to go to a hospital for a formal check.
Claiming to be a blend of natural organic extracts, 100% plant based and not containing any animal, poultry, dairy or chemical product, it carries a disclaimer that it may not be effective on asymtomatic persons or persons with autoimmune disorder. Indian researchers claim the use of coconut oil and lemon grass whereas Virocule's Anosmic Covid 19 smell tester has primarily Apple cedar vinager and spices that affect our sense of smell.
The Lancet, a leading international medical journal, enumerates in its studies that amoungst the symptoms of Covid virus, loss of smell as well as taste are some major ones. On the science of working on the olfactory senses the Anosmic smell tester is claimed to be low cost, easily available, provides instant result.
According to ENT UK journal of King’s College London study, 'Post-viral anosmia is one of the leading causes of loss of sense of smell in adults, accounting for up to 40% cases of anosmia. It is therefore perhaps no surprise that the novel COVID-19 virus would also cause anosmia in infected patients.'
“My impression is that anosmia is an earlier symptom of Covid-19 relative to fever, and some infected people can have anosmia and nothing else,” said physician Andrew Badley, who heads a virus lab at the Mayo Clinic. “So an anosmia smell tester is potentially a more sensitive screen for asymptomatic patients.”
As per The Royal College of Surgeons of England, ''Given that Covid 19 cases can surge as a second wave it is essential and high time to switch from the highly sensitive PCR based survillence regime to a sufficiently easier and inexpensive test regime, a test that can be performed at home multiple times a week.''
It says,''Based on our above findings we stress the usefulness of the COVID-Anosmia checker as a low-cost, fast and accurate quantitative primary mass-screening tool, combined with confirmatory platforms or for self-checking and isolation. This approach could significantly reduce cost, time and enhance detection and tracing of symptomatic and asymptomatic COVID-19 patients thereby immensely helping in management and control of COVID-19 spread'' .
“The nasal passage is a principal gateway for the coronavirus to enter the body. That may be a reason why the loss of smell may be an early indicator of an infection.”
The smell tester was also adopted by ETIO Public Health Consultants for its screening protocol to be used along with its CovidGuard service for businesses.
Globe Newswire reports, Chief Scientific Officer, Toronto, Dr. Deven Sandhu, said, “In clinical studies with 211 participants, ANOSMIC was shown to have high accuracy of over 90% in screening for a COVID-19 infection (91% sensitivity and 97% specificity at a 95% confidence interval).
Dr Tarun Lall who is a senior prof SMS Medical College, presently HoD of designated covid centre at Rajasthan University Health Sciences feels that the Virocule product will come very handy in screening of patients who are roaming around in the general population and are a threat to the normal people who are covid negative.
Dr Lall who is also the nodal offcier at the Trauma Centre of SMS Medical College having tested Virocule on several hundred patients out of his personal curiosity, found that 10% of asymptomatic patients had hyposmia or anosmia who when checked for RT-PCR tested covid positive. He feels that this product is an excellent screening tool to catch the asymptomatic carriers who are roaming around randomly in the general population. ''These people can be segragated from the normal covid negative population and they can be helped because they have never been to a doctor, they do not even know that they are covid ppositive and that they may be carriers of such a deadly disease.'' Dr Lall says that this will come very handy and is a very important product for the Indian population at large.''
Approved for sale and import by the Canadian government Health Ministry, India is tested the efficacy at its Thiruanantapuram's Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology and Regional Centre for Biotechnology, Faridabad, Haryana. As per a senior doctor in Jaipur the smell tester efficacy is being tested at Rajasthan University of Health Sciences. Interestingly there have been many cases of reporting of false positives with the RT-PCR.
President Michael Bryant, Virocule Inc, of Toronto, introducing Anosmic COVID-19 Smell Tester says that is immediate, easy to use, 98 % accurate, non-invasive, organic and can be used at home, work, school, air travel and for events.
Meanwhile the WHO has no word on the successful use of Covid 19 smell tester.