Since late 2019, the coronavirus has been a menace across the world. It has caused millions of deaths and had a significant impact on the global economy during this time. While people have resumed normalcy to some degree, the virus has shown no signs of going away, and neither do the effects. As a result, researchers and medical experts have developed vaccines to help prevent new infections. While effective, these vaccines do not protect you against contracting the virus. New cases are being recorded every day, especially with recent new strains. Therefore, you should get tested as soon as you notice any symptoms related to the disease. But what methods of Covid testing in Princeton, NJ can you take advantage of? Read on to learn more.
Rapid Antigen Test
One of the first tests to be conducted will depend on whether you have been vaccinated. If you have not received a vaccine for Covid, then your sample will be tested through a rapid antigen test called direct agglutination. This method works by detecting viral antigens by mixing them with antibodies and causing them to clump together. This forms visible clumps to make it easier for the doctor to determine if you have contracted the virus and prescribe treatment.
The method is not 100% accurate and may produce a false-negative result. For example, even if you have been infected with Covid, your samples might return a negative result because antibodies in your blood may not have had enough time to react and cause the antigen to clump.
Rapid antigen testing will not be an option for those vaccinated as the antigen will already exist within your body. In this case, an RT-PCR test is conducted. This method detects small fragments of nucleic acid molecules present in coronavirus samples. The enzymatic reaction after the RNA fragment is amplified will produce detectable elements that can determine if you have contracted the virus.
This test does not take long to produce results and uses a sample of your HEMA or saliva. However, it may also generate false-negative results depending on the level of contamination present in your body at the time of testing.
The third method of Covid testing that you can take advantage of is the antibody test. If no symptoms are present, the doctor will order this test to be conducted when they suspect you may have contracted the virus sometime in the past. This works by detecting viral antibodies naturally produced by your body in response to exposure or infection.
You will be required to provide a blood sample, and the result usually is fast. It can help determine if you have been in contact with the virus at some point but cannot tell when the contamination took place. The antibody test may not be 100% accurate either depending on what conditions your body was under when exposed or when the contagion occurred.
In summary, you need to get tested for COvid-19 as soon as you develop symptoms. The available tests for Covid-19 include rapid antigen tests, antibody tests, and RT-PCR tests. Also, remember to get vaccinated to improve your immunity.