Note: Result turn around times are an estimate and are not guaranteed. Our reference lab may need additional time due to weather, holidays, confirmation/repeat testing, or equipment maintenance.

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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) IgG Antibody Blood Test

SARS-CoV-2


Test Code: 39504
Specimen Type: Blood

Description:

**IMPORTANT Information - PLEASE REVIEW** 

Your health:

  1. If you feel like you are having a medical emergency, please call 9-1-1
  2. If you are experiencing severe trouble breathing, continuous pain or pressure in your chest, feeling confused or having difficulty waking up, blue-colored lips or face, or any other emergency signs or symptoms, please seek immediate medical care.

Payment:

  1. No discounts or coupon codes may be applied to orders for COVID-19 testing.
  2. Payments for COVID-19 testing orders (including medical consultation fees) are non-refundablenon-transferable, and cannot be substituted for other types of testing.

Test information:

  1. This test can only be ordered online by the person to be tested.  If you need assistance with placing your online order, please call Request A Test at 1-888-732-2348.
  2. COVID-19 antibody testing cannot be placed on the same order as any other testing.  If you need to order additional lab tests, please place a separate order.
  3. The typical turnaround time for this test is 3-5 business days.  Turnaround is an estimate, not a guarantee.  Additional time may unnecessary due to the volume of testing or unforeseen delays at the lab.
  4. Please check the REQUIREMENTS section at the bottom of this page for important information about placing your testing order.
  5. Your test results will be accessible through your online account with Request A Test.  After receiving your test results, you have the option of having a medical consultation with our physician network for an additional fee of $59.00, which is non-refundable.  During this consultation, an independent licensed physician can answer any questions you may have about your test results and help determine the next steps.  If you are interested in having a medical consultation, contact Request A Test by phone at 1-888-732-2348 to place your order.  You can also see more information about this service HERE.

 COVID-19 (Coronavirus) IgG Antibody Test

What is a COVID-19 antibody test?

This test checks for antibodies to COVID-19.  If you’ve been exposed to COVID-19, your body produces antibodies as part of the immune response to the virus. This test cannot tell you if you have an active infection. If you suspect you have COVID-19, follow up with your healthcare provider about getting a PCR test.

Who should get a COVID-19 antibody test?

This test may be right for you if you:

  • Have been diagnosed with COVID-19, it has been at least 10 days since your diagnosis, and you want to know if you have antibodies.
  • Have not had symptoms and have not had a known exposure to COVID-19 within the last 10 days but want to see if you have antibodies.
  • Have had or suspect you’ve had COVID-19 but have not experienced any new symptoms in the past 10 days (these symptoms include cough, difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or new loss of smell or taste).
  • Have had or suspect you’ve had COVID-19 but have not experienced a fever in the past 24 hours.

Who should not get a COVID-19 antibody test?

This test may NOT be right for you if you:

  • Are feeling sick or have had a fever within the last 24 hours.
  • Are trying to diagnose COVID-19.
  • Have been diagnosed with COVID-19 less than 10 days ago.
  • Were directly exposed to COVID-19 in the past 14 days.
  • Have a condition that weakens your immune system.

What will a COVID-19 antibody test tell me?

This test may help identify if you were exposed to the virus and, if so, whether or not your body has developed antibodies to COVID-19. Although having antibodies usually gives immunity from further infection, there is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have IgG antibodies are protected against future COVID-19 infections. Results from this test also will not provide any information on whether you can spread the virus to others. 

The results of this test should not be used to determine if you are eligible to return to work.  If you have questions about returning to work, contact your employer for guidance. Be sure to continue to follow federal, state, and local government guidance regarding social distancing and isolation.

Are there any limitations to COVID-19 antibody tests?

Getting an antibody test too soon after being infected may cause a false-negative result. Additionally, some individuals who are infected with COVID-19 may not develop detectable levels of antibodies, such as those with weakened immune systems due to a medical condition or certain medications. 

This test may detect IgG antibodies from previous exposure to coronaviruses other than COVID-19, which can cause a false-positive result.

What guidance does the FDA provide regarding COVID-19 antibody testing?

Antibody testing can play a critical role in the fight against COVID-19.  It can help identify individuals who may have been exposed to COVID-19 and have developed an immune response.  Using antibody tests and clinical follow-up can also provide more information on immunity against COVID-19 for research and medical developments for the virus.

Having antibodies usually gives immunity from further infection.  However, there is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have these antibodies are protected against future COVID-19 infection.  Experience with other viruses suggests that individuals who have antibodies may be able to resume daily activities in society, as long as they are recovered and not currently infected with the virus.

How is a COVID-19 antibody test performed?

The test is conducted by collecting a blood sample.

How do I prepare for the test?

You do not need to do anything to prepare for the test. You do not need to fast or stop taking any medication before testing.  Further instructions will be provided to you at the lab.

Is this COVID-19 antibody test qualitative or quantitative?

The results of this test are qualitative.  They will provide either a positive or negative result but no numerical values.

What is the sensitivity and specificity of this COVID-19 antibody test?

The sensitivity of this test is 88% and the specificity is 99%.

Is this COVID-19 serology test approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or have Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the FDA?

The COVID-19 antibody tests and molecular (PCR) tests have not been cleared or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, the FDA has granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for this test.

Where can I get more information?

General FAQs for COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Antibody Test

What is coronavirus disease (COVID-19)?

Coronavirus disease (also called COVID-19) is an infection caused by SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus), one of the most recently discovered types of coronaviruses.  Symptoms may appear 2 to 14 days after being exposed to the virus.  The most common symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing.  Those who have this disease may or may not experience symptoms, which range from mild to severe.

How does COVID-19 spread?

COVID-19 spreads easily from person-to-person, even when an infected person is not showing symptoms. When an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks, droplets containing the virus go into the air. These droplets can be inhaled or land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby, exposing them to the virus.

People may also be exposed to COVID-19 by touching their eyes, nose, or mouth after touching a surface with the virus on it. Although this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads, researchers are still learning more about COVID-19.

How can I protect myself from getting COVID-19?

The best way to protect yourself is to avoid situations in which you may be exposed to the virus. Everyday actions can help protect you and prevent the spread of respiratory diseases such as COVID-19.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Restrict any activities outside your home and maintain a safe distance (around 6 feet) between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This includes avoiding crowded areas, shopping malls, religious gatherings, public transportation, etc.
  • Wear simple cloth face coverings in public settings (like grocery stores and pharmacies) where social distancing is difficult, especially in areas where COVID-19 is spreading.
  • Stay home when you are sick unless you are seeking medical care.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (including tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks).
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water aren’t available. Always wash hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

When should I seek medical care?

If you think you have been exposed, it is important to closely monitor for symptoms. Seek medical attention immediately if you develop severe symptoms, especially if you experience:

  • Severe trouble breathing (such as being unable to talk without gasping for air)
  • Continuous pain or pressure in your chest
  • Feeling confused or having difficulty waking up
  • Blue-colored lips or face
  • Any other signs or symptoms

If you seek medical attention, be sure to call ahead before visiting the facility. This will help the facility keep other people from possibly getting infected or exposed.

  • Tell any healthcare provider that you may have COVID-19.
  • Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
  • Put on a facemask before you enter any healthcare facility.

What is social distancing?

Social distancing, also called “physical distancing,” means keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home.

It includes:

  • Staying at least 6 feet (2 meters) from other people
  • Not gathering in groups
  • Staying out of crowded places and avoiding mass gatherings

Social distancing is one of the best ways to avoid being exposed and to help slow the spread of the virus. It is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

Be sure to continue to follow federal, state, and local government guidance regarding social distancing.

Should I self-quarantine or self-isolate? How does it work?

If you think you may have been exposed to COVID-19, it is very important to stay home and limit your interaction with others in your household and in public.

  • If you have not been tested but may have been exposed to COVID-19, self-monitoring and self-quarantine is recommended to see if you get sick.
  • If you have symptoms or have tested positive for COVID-19, self-isolation is recommended so that you do not pass the virus to others.

For more information on self-isolation and self-quarantine, click here.

If you believe you have symptoms of COVID-19 or that you have been exposed to the virus, you should consult your place of work for specific guidance about whether to stay home or continue working. You should adhere to recommendations set forth by your employer or the department of health, as they may differ from the CDC’s guidelines.

What’s the difference between quarantine and isolation?

Isolation and quarantine are both ways to limit your interaction with others to prevent the spread of disease.

  • Isolation is separating individuals with COVID-19 from people who are not sick. Individuals are separated for a period of time until they are no longer infectious.
  • Quarantine is separating individuals who may have been exposed to COVID-19 but haven’t been tested. They are separated for a brief period of time (14 days after possible exposure) to see if they develop symptoms.

For more information on self-isolation and self-quarantine, click here.

If you are a healthcare professional, first responder, frontline worker, or critical infrastructure worker and believe you have been directly exposed while at work, you should consult your place of work for specific occupational health guidance about whether to stay home or continue working. You should adhere to recommendations set forth by your employer or the department of health, as they may differ from the CDC’s guidelines.

Is there a difference between stopping isolation vs. stopping quarantine?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines about this may at first seem confusing. These guidelines are:

  • Those who have been infected with COVID-19 should isolate. They may be able to stop isolating once symptoms have improved, and it has been at least 10 days since symptoms first appeared. Those who have never had symptoms may be able to stop isolating 10 days after testing.  However, those who had severe illness from COVID-19, or people with a weakened immune system, may need to isolate longer than 10 days or may require testing to determine when they can be around others.
  • Those who have been possibly exposed to COVID-19 should quarantine. They may be able to stop quarantining if they don’t develop symptoms, and it has been at least 14 days after possible exposure.

Please note that it’s possible for a person diagnosed with COVID-19 to stop isolation before someone possibly exposed can stop quarantining.

When can I stop in-home isolation?

If you’ve been diagnosed with COVID-19, please check with your primary healthcare provider or local health department to help determine when it’s right to stop isolation.

Typically this is done when:

  • You have had no fever for at least 24 hours (without using medicine that reduces fever).
  • Your symptoms have improved. (Loss of taste or smell may last for weeks or months and should not delay ending isolation)
  • It has been at least 10 days since your symptoms first appeared.
  • It has been 10 days since you tested positive.
  • You’ve had negative results on a follow-up PCR test.

Please note that people who had a severe illness from COVID-19 or people with a weakened immune system due to a health condition may need to isolate longer than 10 days.  Talk to your healthcare provider to determine when you can discontinue home isolation.  Be sure to continue to follow federal, state, and local government guidance regarding social distancing and isolation. For more information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

Can I take a test to see if I can stop isolating?

There is no test that can tell you when to stop isolating. Check with your primary healthcare provider or local health department to help determine when it’s right to stop isolation. Typically this is done when fever and symptoms improve and/or a specified amount of time has passed, or when you've had follow up PCR testing done.  Be sure to continue to follow federal, state, and local government guidance regarding social distancing and isolation.  For more information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

Can someone who has had COVID-19 become infected again?

Reinfection with COVID-19 has not been confirmed in any individual that has recovered.  Whether an individual can be reinfected remains unknown and is under investigation.  A positive PCR test results during the 90 days after illness started is most likely from the initial infection rather than reinfection.  Visit the CDC website for further information.

What is the difference between Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval?

The FDA has the authority to grant Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to diagnostic tests that have not yet received formal approval in times of a public health emergency. The FDA has granted EUA for certain tests during the COVID-19 pandemic to help detect or diagnose COVID-19.

Like full FDA approval, EUA relies on strict standards. However, EUA is completed more quickly based on the limited data that is available, unlike full FDA approval.

For more information, please visit the FDA website.

What does “sensitivity” mean? What does “specificity” mean?

Sensitivity and specificity are different and complementary measures to inform doctors and patients about the accuracy of a test. A good test has both high sensitivity and high specificity.

Sensitivity is a measure of how well a test is able to detect people who are infected (positive cases). If a person has an infection, a test with 100% sensitivity can accurately detect it with a positive result.

Specificity is a measure of how well a test can detect people who are NOT infected (negative cases). If a person does not have an infection, a test with 100% specificity can accurately detect it with a negative result.

What are false positives and false negatives?

A positive result that is incorrect is called a false positive. False positives occur when a person tests positive even though they do not have the infection.

A negative result that is incorrect is called a false negative. False negatives occur when a person tests negative even though they do have the infection.

False negatives and positives can worsen the COVID-19 pandemic by providing false reassurance to those who have the infection or by causing those who do not have it to use critical resources.

Who is PWNHealth? 

PWNHealth is an independent healthcare provider network that provides oversight services to you in connection with the laboratory testing that you have requested.  PWNHealth and its services are independent of the laboratory and company from whom you requested and registered for the test and their services.

Where can I learn more about COVID-19?

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: About Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

World Health Organization: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak

Additional FAQ's for the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Antibody Test

What is the purpose of COVID-19 antibody testing?

On an individual level, an antibody test looks for antibodies in the blood. Your immune system makes antibody proteins to help fight infections. If you were exposed to COVID-19, an antibody test will show whether or not you’ve developed antibodies against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. An antibody test cannot tell you whether you have a current COVID-19 infection.

On a population level, antibody testing can give researchers a sense of how many people have been exposed to and infected by COVID-19. In the future, antibody testing may show whether someone has immunity against COVID-19, meaning that they cannot get infected again. If antibodies make people immune to COVID-19, it can help inform leaders and public health officials about whether the population has reached herd immunity. Herd immunity is when a large percentage of a population has become immune to COVID-19, which can protect those people who are not immune.

What are the different types of antibodies? Do they offer different types of immunity?

There are three different types of antibodies: IgM, IgG, and IgA.

  • Immunoglobulin M (IgM) is usually produced as the body’s first response to an infection.  However, for COVID-19, IgM antibodies are produced around the same time as IgG antibodies.  Generally, IgM may provide short-term protection and can help tell if an individual has been recently infected.
  • Immunoglobulin G (IgG) is the most common type of antibody. It’s usually made several days to weeks after most infections.  However, for COVID-19, IgG antibodies are produced around the same time as IgM antibodies.  Generally, IgG remains in the body and may provide long-term protection against future exposure.
  • Immunoglobulin A (IgA) is found in the blood, sinuses, lungs, and stomach. Generally, IgA helps protect these areas from infection. However, it's unknown what role these antibodies play in determining exposure or immunity to COVID-19.

There is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have these antibodies are protected against future COVID-19 infections.

When do antibodies develop?

Based on the most current research, antibodies develop around 1-3 weeks after infection from COVID-19. However, this varies by individual, and some people may take a longer time to develop antibodies.

What is the chance that my COVID-19 antibody test result was a false positive?

False positives occur when a person tests positive even though they DO NOT have the antibodies for COVID-19. There is a small chance that the result could be a false positive. Manufacturers must demonstrate a high specificity of approximately 99% to 100% to ensure validation of their test. If you have additional questions, please contact the lab directly for more information.

Can an antibody test help diagnose COVID-19?

Antibody tests do not show whether a person is currently infected.  IgG antibody tests can help us understand how the immune system responds to COVID-19 and how many people have been infected. In the future, IgG antibody tests may be able to tell us whether individuals have immunity against COVID-19.  A molecular (PCR) test is a more reliable indicator of current COVID-19 infection.

What is the difference between an antibody test and a PCR test?

An antibody test checks to see if you’ve developed antibodies against COVID-19, which occurs after being exposed to the virus. Antibody tests do not show whether a person is currently infected. 

PCR tests check for genetic material (viral RNA) produced by the virus. It determines if you’re currently infected and can spread COVID-19 to others.

When would I get an antibody test vs. a PCR test?

You should get an antibody test to check if you’ve been previously exposed to COVID-19.

You should get a PCR test if you have symptoms of COVID-19, are a healthcare worker, or you live or work in a place where people reside, meet, or gather in close proximity. This can include homeless shelters, assisted living facilities, group homes, prisons, detention centers, schools, and workplaces.

A PCR test may also be helpful if you currently have symptoms of COVID-19 or want to check if you have the virus and can pass it on to others.

Can an antibody test be used together with a PCR test?

IgG antibody tests can complement PCR tests by providing information about exposure and how the immune system responds to COVID-19 infections.

If I’m having symptoms of COVID-19 or believe I’ve been exposed to it, what type of test should I get?

If you’re currently having symptoms of COVID-19 or have recently been exposed, you should get a PCR test to see if you’re currently infected.

My COVID-19 antibody test was positive, but I’m still having symptoms. What should I do?

If you’re having symptoms of COVID-19, contact your healthcare provider or local health department to get tested for active infection. The antibody test can only tell you if you’ve been exposed and have developed an immune response, but it cannot say whether you have an active infection.

My COVID-19 antibody test was negative, but I previously tested positive for COVID-19 or was exposed. Is my result incorrect?

Getting an IgG antibody test too soon after being infected may cause a false-negative result. It usually takes around 1-3 weeks after being infected with COVID-19 for your body to produce enough IgG antibodies to be detected in the blood. Some people may take even longer to develop antibodies or may not develop enough antibodies to be detected by the test. It is recommended that you contact your healthcare provider or local health department to see if retesting is needed.

If my COVID-19 antibody test is positive, can I get sick again with COVID-19?

If your test results show that you're positive for COVID-19 antibodies in the blood, it means you've likely been exposed to COVID-19.  Although having antibodies usually gives immunity from further infection, there is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have these antibodies are protected against future COVID-19 infections.

What does an indeterminate COVID-19 antibody test result mean?

If your test result is indeterminate for COVID-19 antibodies in the blood, this means that the results were neither positive nor negative. You will likely need to be retested in order to confirm whether or not you have antibodies in your blood. An indeterminate result can happen if you do not have enough antibodies in your blood for the test to detect, such as if you test too soon after becoming infected. This result can also happen if there was a problem with your sample or the test itself.

Can I have antibodies if I did not have any symptoms of COVID-19?

You can have IgG antibodies from an asymptomatic COVID-19 infection. An asymptomatic infection is when you are infected but do not show any symptoms.

Can my antibody value change over time?

It usually takes 1-3 weeks for antibodies to be detected in your blood. Because antibodies develop over time, it’s possible that your antibody levels can change depending on when you tested.

My antibody value is low. Should I get retested to see if my result will change?

It usually 1-3 weeks for antibodies to be detected in your blood. Because antibodies develop over time, it’s possible that your antibody levels can change depending on when you tested. However, this varies by individual. Talk with your healthcare provider or local health department about your results to see if retesting is advised.

Am I immune if I tested positive for antibodies?

If your test results show that you’re positive for COVID-19 antibodies in the blood, it means you’ve likely been exposed to COVID-19. Although having antibodies usually gives immunity from further infection, there is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have these antibodies are protected against future COVID-19 infections.

If I had more severe symptoms of COVID-19, will I have a higher antibody level?

Some studies have shown that individuals with more severe symptoms develop higher antibody levels. However, although having antibodies usually gives immunity from future infection, there is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have higher amounts of these antibodies are better protected against future COVID-19 infections.

If I had high antibody levels, does that mean I’m better protected against COVID-19?

Some studies have shown that individuals with more severe illness develop higher antibody levels.  However, although having antibodies usually gives immunity from further infection, there is not enough evidence at this time to suggest that people who have these antibodies—in any amount—are protected against future COVID-19 infections.

If I have antibodies, am I a good candidate for donating plasma?

People who have fully recovered from COVID-19 and have antibodies are encouraged to consider donating plasma. You must be completely recovered from symptoms for at least 14 days prior to donation. If you have additional questions, please contact the donation center directly for more information.

Based on the results of my antibody test, do I need to continue social distancing and/or wearing a mask? Can I visit someone who is at risk for severe symptoms of the virus?

At this time, there is no test that can tell you when to stop social distancing or isolating.  Be sure to check with your healthcare provider about the next steps and continue to follow federal, state, and local government guidance regarding social distancing and COVID-19 safety precautions. You should also use caution or avoid visiting at-risk individuals like those above the age of 65 or with pre-existing medical conditions.

Can a COVID-19 antibody test tell me when I can visit someone who is at risk for severe symptoms of the virus?

There is no test that can tell you when you can visit someone who is at risk for more severe symptoms of COVID-19. Check with your primary healthcare provider or local health department to help determine when the time is right to make such visits. Be sure to continue to follow federal, state, and local government guidance regarding social distancing and COVID-19 safety precautions.

Note: Result turn around times are an estimate and are not guaranteed. Our reference lab may need additional time due to weather, holidays, confirmation/repeat testing, or equipment maintenance.

Requirements:

 **Please review this important information**

At the time you place your order, you will be required to answer several questions to determine your eligibility for taking the IgG antibody blood test.  An independent physician will determine whether to authorize your test request, if appropriate. 

You will be asked to submit the following information:

  • Have you had a fever higher than 100.5 in the last 24 hours?
  • Have you experienced any symptoms of COVID-19 in the last 10 days?
  • Have you previously tested for or been diagnosed with COVID-19?
  • Have you been exposed to anyone with a known COVID-19 infection in the last 14 days?

Please contact Request A Test prior to placing your order if you have any questions.

The total fee for this test includes $10 collected on behalf of PWNHealth, an organization that Request A Test partners with, for physician oversight services.  PWNHealth is an independent healthcare provider network that provides oversight services to you in connection with the laboratory testing that you have requested.  PWNHealth and its services are independent of the laboratory and Request A Test. You may view additional information related to COVID-19 HERE

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