The COVID-19 tests you probably have in your cabinet could contain a toxic chemical that can kill you.
A few months ago when the U.S. was seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases caused by Omicron across the country, many people were testing at home.
Only then was it discovered that many of these take-home rapid antigen tests contain a poisonous chemical called Sodium Azide. Across the country, drug and poison centers have now seen a surge in calls about exposure to the toxic substance.
Sodium Azide is a colorless tasteless and odorless chemical with a “high” acute toxicity. It can be fatal to humans in cases of overexposure, according to Stanford Medical.
A small amount of the chemical, like that found in test kits, can produce symptoms like cough, dizziness, rapid heart rate and skin burns and blisters, according to the CDC.