Coronavirus Antibody Testing Now Available
Why should you get the test?
The antibody test is designed to show whether you are currently infected or were previously infected with/exposed to the coronavirus. It is believed that persons infected and since recovered are immune to the coronavirus; however, the level of immunity and how long immunity lasts is not yet known.
Antibody test results are especially important for detecting previous infections in patients who may not have had symptoms. It is believed that some people may have contracted the coronavirus and recovered without displaying symptoms. These people may now be immune to the virus. The number of people who contracted the virus without symptoms is unknown but believed to be a much larger population than initially thought.
Once someone has antibodies confirmed via bloodwork, they are regarded as immune from the disease.
When to Get Tested?
People who have been infected with the coronavirus should wait until they have recovered before having the antibody test. The recommended time period is now 3 weeks after symptom onset. This is because testing while the body is still building an immune response to the virus may not yield intended results.
How is the Coronavirus Antibody Test Performed?
Antibody tests look for specific proteins in a person's blood that have been made in response to an infection. When antibodies to a specific virus are found in the blood, it shows that a person has had an immune response to the infection.
To perform the test, we will collect a small sample of blood from you. The blood specimen is then sent to a lab that has obtained FDA approval to conduct Coronavirus antibody testing. Test results are forwarded to our office typically within 2-4 days; however, this can vary. We will contact you to discuss test results as soon as the results are available.