Evidence Based Case Report: Diagnostic Accuracy of Saliva Specimen RT-PCR Compared to Nasopharyngeal Swab Specimen in COVID-19 Suspects
Introduction: Nasopharyngeal swab followed by RT-PCR has become the gold standard in diagnosing COVID-19. This method is difficult to perform because the procedure is inconvenient for the patient. There is another diagnostic method using saliva as an RT-PCR specimen.
Objective: To determine the diagnostic accuracy of saliva specimen RT-PCR in diagnosing COVID-19 compared to nasopharyngeal swab specimens as the gold standard.
Methods: Literature searching was performed by searching literature through MEDLINE, EBSCO, and Scopus. The articles selected were diagnostic or cross-sectional studies containing sensitivity, specificity, prevalence data, and appropriate to our PICO and eligibility criteria. A critical appraisal was performed after obtaining the selected articles.
Results: Six articles were critically appraised. All articles showed that the saliva sample used for RT-PCR in diagnosing COVID-19 had good diagnostic accuracy.
Conclusion: Saliva specimen to diagnose COVID-19 can replace nasopharyngeal swab specimen because it has comparable diagnostic accuracy with the gold standard. It is also a non invasive method which is more convenient for patients.