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Fact Check: Coronavirus testing swabs do not plant substances in the brain; viral post is fake

Vishvas News investigated and found the claim to be false. Nasopharyngeal swabs do not contain chips and do not implant the same that would affect the brain. The swabs are used to collect samples from the nasopharynx and aren’t used to plant anything to the brain.

  • By Vishvas News
  • Updated: August 17, 2021

New Delhi (Vishvas News): A viral post on social media claims that nasal swabs taken as a sample to test for COVID-19 can be used to plant chips, and other viruses on the brain, and this would result in brain damage. As per the claim, this is because the sample is taken from cribriform plate. Vishvas News investigated and found the claim to be false. Nasopharyngeal swabs do not contain chips and do not implant the same that would affect the brain. The swabs are used to collect samples from the nasopharynx and aren’t used to plant anything in the brain.

Claim

The post shared on social media reads: “The Coronavirus test is not credible and likely to be for clandestine brain access….” The complete post can be read by clicking here.

The archived version of the post can be checked here.

Investigation

We started our investigation by searching reports on COVID-19 testing. Nasal swab is the testing method for coronavirus as is recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In India, nasal swabs are used as COVID-19 testing and the sample is collected from the nasopharynx.

How are nasopharyngeal swabs used to test for COVID-19?

The swabs are inserted parallel to the nasal floor. Then the sample is taken from the nasopharynx. Nasopharynx is found between the base of the skull and the soft palate. The swabs do not take samples from the cribriform plate, which forms the roof of the nasal cavity.

We further investigated to find whether the swab tip plants any substance on the brain. We found no credible evidence suggesting that the swab tip contains any other substance.

Vishvas News spoke to Dr. Abhishek Juneja who is a Senior Neurologist at Maharaja Agrasen Hospital, New Delhi. He said: “Nasopharyngeal swabs that are used to test for COVID-19 take samples from the nasopharynx, not the cribriform plate. Also, there is no evidence to suggest that swabs contain chips, chemicals or viruses and that would cause damage to the brain. The viral claim is fake.

The post is shared on Facebook by a user named Jack Zee. When we scanned the profile of the user we found that the user has 977 friends on Facebook.

Conclusion: Vishvas News investigated and found the claim to be false. Nasopharyngeal swabs do not contain chips and do not implant the same that would affect the brain. The swabs are used to collect samples from the nasopharynx and aren’t used to plant anything to the brain.

  • Claim Review : The Coronavirus test is not credible and likely to be for clandestine brain access
  • Claimed By : Jack Zee
  • Fact Check : False
False
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