Common Upper Respiratory Lab Tests

nurse performing common upper respiratory lab tests

Adults and children suffer from respiratory infections frequently, and there are a few common upper respiratory lab tests that are used to diagnose them. 

What Are Upper Respiratory Infections? 

Upper respiratory infections happen when any part of the respiratory tract is inflamed or infected. Several things can cause this, but most commonly, people contract upper respiratory infections from being sick previously. 

Sicknesses that can cause an upper respiratory infection include the following: 

  • Colds
  • Flu
  • COVID-19
  • Strep throat
  • Mono

How Are Upper Respiratory Infections Tested? 

The type of test administered to you will depend on the condition that your symptoms align with. Common upper respiratory lab tests include Flu, COVID-19, Mono, Strep, and RSV. 

Flu Testing

Flu tests are completed with a nasal swab. Your medical provider will have you tilt your head back, and they will swab both sides of your nose. Usually, your provider will complete both a PCR test and a rapid test to determine if you have the virus. 

COVID-19 Testing

COVID-19 tests are similar to flu tests. Because the flu and COVID-19 have similar symptoms, you will likely receive both when you visit a clinic. 

During a COVID-19 test, you will be asked to lean your head back while the provider uses a nasopharyngeal swab to swab the inside of your nostrils. They will likely complete a PCR and a rapid test for COVID-19. 

Strep Testing

Before getting tested, your provider will do a thorough checkup of your throat. If your throat and tonsils appear inflamed, they will likely complete a strep test. Strep is tested with a throat culture, which consists of swabbing the back of the throat and sending it into the lab. 

You will know your results within a few days of receiving this test, but oftentimes providers will proceed with treatment before they know your results. 

Mono Testing

Although you may present with symptoms of a cold or the flu, you could have mono. Your medical provider can check this by doing a blood test. They will see if your white blood counts are elevated and also your antibodies. 

Where Can I Get Tested For Upper Respiratory Infections? 

Most urgent care clinics offer upper respiratory testing. However, before visiting an urgent care clinic, check out their website to make sure they offer lab testing for the condition you may have. At MainStreet Family Care, we offer many urgent care lab tests. 

Turn To MainStreet Family Care

At MainStreet Family Care, we test and treat upper respiratory infections all the time. If you’re suffering from a suspected upper respiratory infection, we would love to help you heal and feel better, FAST! 

You can register online to join the queue from wherever you are and wait in your car or at home until we’re ready to see you. We’ll send you a text when it’s time to check in at the front desk. 

Walk-ins are always welcome in our clinics, but please be aware that registering online reduces in-clinic wait times. 

Walk-ins are added to the same queue as those who register online.