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Can You Trust That At-Home Covid Test Result?

After dodging Covid-19 for nearly two and a half years, I knew my time would come. A few weeks ago it did: I tested positive on a rapid antigen test.

But I also tested negative on two other rapid tests, and also negative on a PCR. And again positive on another rapid test, all in one 24-hour span. The mixed results stumped me, and highlight the frustration many people are feeling when they suspect Covid symptoms but aren’t sure they can trust test results.

I asked some doctors, academics and scientists to explain my wonky test results, and here’s what they said.

First, testing discrepancies appear to be increasingly common with Omicron and its subvariants, so some common sense comes in handy. If you’re like me and living with people with Covid-19 and feel symptoms develop, you’re likely developing Covid-19. So even if your tests say otherwise, stay home.

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