Coronavirus Update 4/29/2020

Becky McGilligan / April 29, 2020 / 3 minute read

Earlier this week, LabCorp announced that they now have a COVID-19 IgG antibody test. IgG antibodies occur after a person has had an infection and their immune system has successfully fought it off.

We do have the capability to utilize this test. It is a new test, allowed to be run by the FDA under the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA).

This is a test you can have done at a LabCorp draw site or at our office. We then send the blood tube to LabCorp to process the test. If you choose to have this test done at a LabCorp draw site, contact our office so we can place the order. If you choose to have this blood sample drawn at our office office, contact the office and we will schedule you.

We ask that patients be symptom free for at least 14 days prior to coming into the office. We also have all patients who come in the office wear a mask or other facial covering. We currently are only allowing one patient in the office at a time.

We are being told we will get results in 1-3 days. Our office will contact you when we get your results.

LabCorp’s Question and Answer section states the following:

This test provides evidence that you may have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2 virus.

This test can be helpful if a patient has had recent symptoms suggesting COVID-19, but who did not undergo molecular diagnostic testing (nasal swab) for SARS-CoV-2 or who was tested but results were negative.

What does a positive/negative result mean?

  1. A positive result indicates an individual has likely produced an immune response to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
  2. A negative serologic result suggests that an individual has not developed detectable antibodies at the time of testing.
  3. While contingent on a variety of factors, a negative result could be due to testing too early in the course of infection, the absence of exposure to the virus, or the lack of an adequate immune response, which can be due to conditions or treatments that suppress immune function.
  4. Confirmation of infection with SARS-CoV-2 must be made through a combination of clinical evaluation and other applicable tests.
  5. Decisions about ongoing monitoring, treatment, or return to normal activities for patients being treated for suspected infection with SARS-CoV-2 should also be made in accordance with guidance from public health authorities.

This test has emergency use authorization under the FDA currently.
This means:

  1. It has not been reviewed by the FDA.
  2. Results from antibody testing should not be used as the sole basis to diagnose or exclude SARS-CoV-2 infection or to inform infection status.
  3. Negative results DO NOT rule out SARS-CoV-2 infection, particularly in those who have been in contact with the virus.
  4. Positive results may be due to past or present infection with non-SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus strains, such as coronavirus HKU1, NL63, OC43, or 229E.