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Medical professionals sound the alarm over inaccurate antibody testing

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POCATELLO, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - With COVID-19 tests becoming more available, new concerns have medical professionals sounding the alarm over antibody testing.

Identifying antibodies is fairly new. It’s used to detect the body’s immune response to the infection caused by the virus rather than detecting the virus itself. Results conclude whether a patient has been exposed to the virus and has recovered.

There are more than 50 different antibody testing manufacturers who claim to provide the most accurate results. However, there is only one that is approved by the Food & Drug Administration.

Idaho State University's health center director, Dr. Ron Solbrig, says the most effective way to identify antibodies is under the right conditions. It takes up to 21 days for the body to develop a substantial amount of immunity to a virus to ensure that testing can even detect the body’s immune response. FDA approved antibody testing also requires a blood sample and examined in an approved laboratory.

Meanwhile, the popular “finger prick” testing has not been verified by the FDA and does not provide accurate information. “None of them have been vetted or tested by the FDA. None of them have been tested by an independent organization to verify their accuracy. All of those are relying upon the manufacturers to tell us whether they are accurate,” Dr. Solbrig said. He continued to point out that false information can be detrimental to the containment of the virus. 

For more information on FDA antibody testing click HERE.

Article Topic Follows: Coronavirus Coverage

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