Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the official name of the novel coronavirus that is currently causing a worldwide pandemic. COVID-19 is the official name of the respiratory disease caused by SARS-CoV-2. SARS-CoV-2 is highly contagious and is transmitted through respiratory droplets and contact with contaminated surfaces.
More information about COVID-19 can be found at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention CDC website: https://www.cdc.gov/
Although several studies are still in progress, according to the March 10th, 2020 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, the incubation period for COVID-19 as measured from publicly confirmed cases is as follows: median incubation period is 5 days.
The COVID-19 antibody test is a blood test that provides qualitative and quantitative detection of IgM and IgG antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 in individuals suspected of COVID-19. After infection, the virus antigen stimulates the immune system to produce antibodies that can be detected in the blood. Among these antibodies, the IgM antibodies appear early and are mostly positive after 3-5 days of onset.
The IgM titers then decrease while the IgG antibody potency starts to rise rapidly. During the recovery phase, the titer of the IgG antibody may increase four times or more compared to the acute phase.
Combined with the Nasal Swab by RT-qPCR, the COVID-19 Serological Antibody Blood Test offers a valuable diagnostic tool in identifying infected patients. According to recent studies, the COVID-19 antibodies are not detectable before 3 days after onset of symptoms (or at least 7 to 10 days after infection). However, antibody tests can detect past infection because virus-specific antibodies can persist in the blood for several weeks/months after the onset of symptoms. Since the exact time of infection is often unknown, combining RT-qPCR (nasal swab) and IgM/IgG testing (blood test) can improve the accuracy of the COVID-19 diagnosis.
COVID-19 Antibody Test is recommended to be used on patients with at least 5 days after onset of symptoms or 7-10 days after infection with the virus.
The CDC stated that “Clinicians should use their judgment to determine if a patient has signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-19 and whether the patient should be tested”. In addition, priority testing should be given to:
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