Dr. Tehrany shares his expert opinion on antibody testing

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In a recent New York Times article, people can find a hint of hope that life will slowly get back to normal. The article covers the facts about the COVID-19 antibody tests that are currently in development. Dr. Armin Tehrany closely follows the development of the COVID-19 situation and shares his expert opinion on the topic to help everyone get a better understanding of the situation.  Today, he shared a video where he expressed his hope that in the following weeks, people will be able to get tested on a wide scale. The extensive testing can help experts understand what proportion of the population has already had the coronavirus.
  The antibody test is a blood test that determines whether someone has ever been infected with the coronavirus. These tests are critical as they provide data on how many people have successfully fought the coronavirus and have built immunity. This information is essential as it helps understand if medical workers have immunity, so they can go back to work and help patients.  By testing for the presence of antibodies (immune molecules that are key in fighting off disease), the antibody tests will identify the degree to which the virus has infiltrated our population. This testing could be the answer to the United States’ ability to restart the economy and allow those who are immune to return to work. According to Dr. Tehrany, one major issue with the test is the accuracy rate. 
“The hope is that the antibody testing becomes accurate enough that it can be used on a wide scale, and those who are immune can go out and donate plasma and help others,” Dr. Tehrany explains. 
While these tests certainly give something to look forward to, there are still a few drawbacks that may prevent them from being as effective as one might hope. One problem is that the tests do not give insight into any early infections due to the delay in the appearance of antibodies following the infection with COVID-19. They also do not provide a specific answer on immunity since people with milder symptoms may have antibodies present, but not at a level high enough to ensure protective immunity.
“There may be false positives and false negatives.  While we should be hopeful, we have to remain cautiously optimistic,” Dr. Tehrany concludes.
Once again, we strongly recommend that everyone stays home and thinks positive during these turbulent times.  For any orthopedic emergency, feel free to contact us and schedule a Telemedicine appointment with Dr. Armin Tehrany.