What Is an Antibody Test?
An antibody test is a process of screening for the antibodies in your bloodstream. The body produces antibodies for fighting-off infections like COVID-19 virus. It is essential to build immunity against any virus that enters your body. The test is also known as the serology test.
The antibody test kit checks whether your body has developed immunity against coronavirus, i.e., the body has reacted against the infection.
Purpose of Antibody Test
The antibody test is essential to test the presence of COVID-19 virus in your body. The antibody test for corona examines the presence of one or more kinds of antibodies in the body for SARS-CoV-2, which is the causative agent for COVID-19. The antibody types are:
- IgM antibodies are present early in the infection
- IgG antibodies form at a later stage
Usually, the body creates IgG antibodies within two to three weeks of the visible signs and symptoms. These antibodies stay in the blood for long, even after the elimination of the infection. But, the duration is doubtful in the case of coronavirus.
It is essential to note that the antibody test kit for COVID-19 does not provide information about the following:
- Whether one has developed immunity to coronavirus
- If you are a carrier of coronavirus or not
Antibody Test Results
You cannot do the antibody test at home; hence, you need to go to any pathology lab in India. The test is only admissible if it is done in an ICMR approved pathology lab for COVID testing in India.
Once it is complete, then you need to wait for the results. The antibody test result time to result is around 24 hrs.
The antibody test results can be either positive or negative.
- Positive-If the result is positive, it means you had the infection, and your body has developed some immunity to the coronavirus.
- Negative– A negative result on a SARS-CoV-2 antibody test means antibodies to the virus were not detected in your sample. It could mean:
1. You have not been infected with COVID-19 previously.
2. You had COVID-19 in the past but you did not develop or have not yet developed detectable antibodies. It is unknown if all infected individuals will develop a detectable antibody response.
There are several reasons why negative antibody test results do not indicate with certainty that you do not have or have not had an infection with SARS-CoV-2. For example, if you are tested soon after being infected with SARS-CoV-2, the test may be negative, because it takes time for the body to develop an antibody response. It is also unknown if antibody levels decline over time to undetectable levels.
In both cases, there is no need to follow up if there are no symptoms. But if there are symptoms, then you need to take a diagnostic test for confirming any active virus by getting yourself checked for COVID-19 by RT-PCR test.
Antibody Test Cost In India
The antibody test cost in India is variable and may fall in the range of Rs. 500-800. The antibody test cost is very reasonable to allow easy and high numbers for testing by people. There are numerous diagnostic labs across the country. If you have queries such as antibody testing near me due to observable symptoms of COVID-19, contact the medical centres near you to get more information.