Does the COVID-19 Swab Break the Fast?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Farid Dingle


Does the Covid-19 swab break the fast?


In the Shafi’i school, one’s fast is broken if something goes into one’s nose and passes past the cartilage. So too, if something enters one’s mouth and down one’s throat, it breaks the fast. To point the substance/object would have to reach one’s throat would be past the point of articulation of the letter H in ‘halal’ and to the point of the H in ‘happy.’ [Ibn Hajr, al-Manhaj al-Qawim]

To my knowledge, there are two types of Covid-19 swabs. (Please see:
COVID-19 Diagnostics: Performing a Nasopharyngeal and Oropharyngeal Swab

The nasopharyngeal swab (nose swab) would break the fast. As demonstrated above, the oropharyngeal swab (mouth swab) would also not break the fast as it doesn’t reach the part of the throat described above.

Please also see the following:
The Fiqh of Fasting Ramadan According to the School of Imam Shafi’i
I pray this helps.

[Shaykh] Farid Dingle
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Farid Dingle has completed extensive years of study in the sciences of the Arabic language and the various Islamic Sciences. During his studies, he also earned a CIFE Certificate in Islamic Finance. Over the years he has developed a masterful ability to craft lessons that help non-Arabic speakers gain a deep understanding of the language. He currently teaches courses in the Arabic Language