Nose and throat swabs are already uncomfortable enough when getting a COVID-19 test, but China has reportedly gone one step further.

The New York Post is reporting that the country has gone to using anal swabs to test for coronavirus. Why? “Local experts say the method is a more accurate way to detect the bug,”

Surprisingly, anal swabs have been used there since last year, but they are reserved for people in COVID-19 hot spots. To do this, the swabs are inserted 3 to 5 centimeters inside the rectum.

According to Li Tongzeng, who works at Beijing You’an Hospital, “Of course, anal swabs aren’t as convenient as throat swabs, so they’re only being used on individuals in key quarantine areas. This will reduce the return of false positives.”

Tongzeng adds, “What we’ve found is that in some infected patients, the coronavirus survives for a longer period of time in their digestive tract or excrement than in their respiratory tract.”

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