People who have a skull base surgery or has extensive sinus should consider requesting for oral testing when available Credit: Twitter image

This story was widely shared by various news outlets on Friday. Post the news going viral independent fact checkers have found that the story which claimed that a nasal swab test punctures US woman’s brain lining is false. The fake story said that it caused the cerebrospinal fluids to leak from her nose and also put her at risk of life-threatening infection as reported by doctors in a medical journal on Thursday.

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Independent fact checker Snopes.com did a fact check speaking to various medical experts and found that this was not possible.

According to the article, the 40-year-old woman had a pre-existing defect in the base of her skull (the bone at the top of the nose) and a sac of brain tissue had protruded out into the nasal cavity. This is a rare condition that we see in neurosurgery and in ear, nose and throat clinics.

About one in 10,000 babies are born with a defect like this, but the rate at which it occurs in adults is unknown. In this lady’s case it was probably because the pressure inside her skull around the brain was higher than normal, creating a weak spot.



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