Questions and Answers
Why get tested?
Getting tested for antibodies is important for your general health and well being. In addition, getting tested for antibodies is important for obtaining travel documents and being accepted for employment.
What are antibodies?
Antibodies are a type of protein produced in our blood in response to our exposure to a particular antigen or toxic foreign material. These substances generally combine with alien substances in our bodies like bacteria, viruses, and other similar substances.
What is the COVID-19 Rapid Antibody Test?
The COVID-19 Rapid Antibody Test is one of the types of test formulated to determine if a person has been exposed to the COVID-19 virus. The test checks for COVID-19 antibodies in your system. There are two types of antibodies: IgM and IgG. IgM antibodies are our body’s natural line of defense and formed within 3-7 days of exposure. IgG, on the other hand, takes 7-30+ days after infection and works as a long term defense. The presence of these antibodies in your system indicates you have been exposed to the virus and your system is developing an immune system for it.
What should I do if the test turns positive?
The test result as positive indicates that your body contains the antibodies to the COVID-19 strain. This could mean that you have been exposed to the virus in the last 3-30 days based on the result and need to isolate yourself to avoid spread. There is also a small chance that it could be a false positive result showing up a past infection of a different coronavirus strain. The healthcare professional administering the tests can explain further if you have any doubts.
What does a negative test mean?
A negative test means that the test did not detect any antibody to the virus in your sample. It could mean that either you have not been infected yet or it is too early to form antibodies in your body. If you have a negative test result and develop any symptoms, it is advisable to take the test again.
What is the difference between PCR testing, antigen testing, and antibody testing?
PCR and antigen testing are used to diagnose active COVID-19 infections via saliva or nasal swab. If the person has an active infection, these tests will be positive. Antibody testing, however, does not detect active infection. It checks for the antibodies formed in our system once we have been exposed to the virus. Antibody tests can detect antibodies present for more than 7 days in our system.