Testing: Have You Had the Disease?

4 April 2020. Updated 7 April 2020.
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Chris Smith
1 month ago

Antibody testing can tell us we’ve had the disease and should be a high priority. If we know we’ve had the virus, can’t get it again (95%+), and are non infectious as 2 weeks have passed since symptoms (95%+), then we can be safely be back a to work.
One UK firm, Biopanda, was selling 20,000 tests per day from at least March 13th. Goodness knows how many they sell now. Despite antibody testing being pillar three on the gov’s testing plan since April 6th there is still no news on mass testing. The PHE seem very dismissive of non PCR tests – is this because they aren’t NHS tests? I know they have few health benefits to medics, but they are the tests that will get the rest of us moving again.
The time lag and lack of action to sort out a ‘virus clear’ certificate is both weird and shocking.
My suggestion would be a digital certificate for everyone on their phones with 2 sections. One for ‘antibody positive’ and the date of the test. The other for ‘date symptoms cleared’ with a 14 day countdown until the person is clear. Get two ticks and you are good to go.

Henry Hardy
Henry Hardy
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris Smith

I had the virus for much of February, earlier than was supposed to be possible. I asked my GP surgery for a test so that I could be more useful to others if found to be immune, but was told there was none, and that getting the virus didn’t guarantee immunity. I too am shocked that there seems to be no movement on an antibody test, especially if there is indeed a good one available. Why is nothing happening?

Gavin
Gavin
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris Smith

The civil liberty implications of this type of Certificate should also be considered. Anything humans administer will be open to incompetence or corruption and sinister motives.

Frida Turner
Frida Turner
1 month ago

I am pretty sure I had Covid over the New Year period whilst on a New Year break in Spitsbergen, showing quite a few of the symptoms. In fact quite a lot of people in our hotel were unwell at the time by various degrees.

Mike May
Mike May
1 month ago

As for antibody testing, we’ve recently heard that some patients known to have survived COVID-19 do not posses antibodies. However, a 2012 research paper found that mice were able to survive infection by the neurotropic vesicular stomatitis virus (whatever that is) without having or producing any antibodies.

Here’s the original paper (https://www.cell.com/immunity/fulltext/S1074-7613(12)00057-X – enjoy!) and a bite-size in Science Daily (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120301143426.htm).

Of course, viruses differ in plenty of ways but this paper at least establishes the possibility lending itself to probability that the human immune system is an awesome machine that kicks the **** out of SARS-CoV-2 any way it can.

Vanessa
Vanessa
1 month ago

I am sure I had Coronavirus with symptoms starting on 22nd Jan. I did not know it was coronavirus at the time and only realised in March when I heard about the symptoms. I did a private antibody test last Friday and am waiting for results. You can get the test from Summerfield Healthcare https://www.summerfieldhealthcare.co.uk/corona-virus-testing/
My Pharmacist of the last 20 years told me that he knew something was up in November when more people than ever before were getting ill and complaining of a dry persistent cough. Its the only time I have heard it started that early – but its a very reliable source.

sunsetboulevard
sunsetboulevard
1 month ago
Reply to  Vanessa

My Wife had an operation in November and was surprised when the Anaesthetist asked her if she was ok as the readings showed she was not taking in sufficient Oxygen. She later developed full blown Cough / Unable to breath which – eventually disappeared. Meaning she got over it. This disease was prevalent much before that stated by the Government. Indeed in Europe it’s already been documented that people were complaining of similar conditions in the last 3 months of last year.

Clive
Clive
26 days ago

Last mid-November, quite out of the blue (I hadn’t been on the Tube, been out visiting clients etc) I developed a dry cough one evening which went to full ‘ManFlu’ .. but way beyond anything I’ve ever had in my life, It culminated in me being unable to breathe and, having struggled my way to the loo in the early hours, a palpable sense of doom as I knew that if I were to cough again I wouldn’t be able to catch my breath. It took all my will power to subdue the dark panic within me all the while with a sense of ‘this is it’ … However, so long as I kept my body upright (which meant I didn’t sleep for two whole nights) I could just about get enough air into my lungs. A long dawn stood at an open window with a slight breeze calmed me. Eventually, my coughing started to produce phlegm (sorry!) and my lungs cleared and I could breathe again.

I was told it was pneumonia but I had all the other symptoms of this Whu Flu. I have since taken an anti-body test which proved negative. I’m taking another one this week.

My best friend caught ‘ManFlu’ though without the asphyxia I had) in December and, having heard about my saga has also taken a test. He proved positive.

Something is amiss.

Ian Hannay
Ian Hannay
19 days ago
Reply to  Clive

I live is Spain, but travelled home To UK to see my kids before Christmas. On Friday 6th December I took a train ride from Glasgow to London, leaving my son in Glasgow to visit my daughter in Kent. A young Chinese lad got on the train at Carlisle, sitting in the window seat next to me. He sniffed, coughed and sneezed all the way to London.
I stayed in London for another 4 days and flew back to Spain on 11th December. I went down with a dreadful “flu”, feeling terrible right through to the New Year. I am in good health and normally don’t suffer bad colds, let alone flues. Looking back now, I am sure that I have had Corvi-19 (China flu, as President Trump rightly calls it).
Ian

sammyg
sammyg
21 days ago

Both myself and my husband are sure we had Coronavirus at the end of December/beginning of January. Persistent cough, fever. Seemed to last about 4/5 weeks varying in severity. We have paid for a private antibody test due in the post this week.

Michael Orpen-Palmer
Michael Orpen-Palmer
17 days ago

May I be allowed to join the growing list of those convinced that they have had this virus? This was the end of January and beginning of February, and thus before there was public (or even GP) awareness of the virus. Two weeks of an appalling dry cough – particularly prevalent at night, so that I was forced to try and sleep sitting up in a chair (I luckily have one of those recliner thingies – well, I am in my 70’s!). It was unlike any sort of flu I had had previously and as I showed several of the listed symptoms – and had had the flu jab against previously known forms of flu – I, along with several chums including the guy who admitted he probably gave it to us – came to the conclusion that it was indeed the dreaded killer virus (except we are all alive to talk about it!).
I eventually went to the Doctor when the symptoms were beginning to abate. The blood test showed a large increase in my white cell count which is indicative; and a subsequent chest x-ray showed that I have been left with mild emphysema as a result.

giblets
giblets
16 days ago

Another suspected case here. I did a business trip to Shenzhen in December, came back and developed a very dry cough that lasted a week, was significantly out of breath after. It links in with the case that went round Paris around the same time

See - owe to Rich
See - owe to Rich
15 days ago

I am so happy/relieved to read of others with supposedly impossible early coronavirus episodes. Mine started on January 4th, having mingled with lots of strangers at a pub on New Year’s Eve, and consisted of a dry cough, feverish feelings but did not take my temperature, awful lassitude, loss of taste which meant that I only ate sparingly and because I thought I should, and deafness in one ear (probably a secondary infection as that one isn’t a classic COVID-19 symptom).

I didn’t know that private antibody tests were available; can someone please give more details?

Jonathan Smith
Jonathan Smith
12 days ago

I had it in mid January. It began about 12th when I had a high temperature, mild sore throat and and general aches and pain. I had a bad chest accompanied by mild breathlessness. I have never been afflicted with chest infections before. Alongside this I developed a persistent dry cough which eventually became productive a few days before it ended. I was ill into the second week of February. A member of my household went through it beginning and ending just a couple of days before me. A frequent visitor was totally knocked for six by it. He had the additional symptom of conjunctivitis. It was this in retrospect that convinces me that we all had the kung flu back in January.

chris c
chris c
11 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan Smith

News from deepest darkest Suffolk – asking around I have heard of less than half a dozen coronavirus cases – most presumed as they weren’t tested,except for one who was a medical professional and was hospitalised – though he came out OK. So much for this instantly lethal virus eh?

On the other hand I have heard of several times that number of people who had something closely resembling the symptoms between October and February, the majority being around December/January, self included.

Mine was relatively mild, I coughed a bit, especially at night, and felt off for a few days, and I had pink eye only in one eye which was gone by lunchtime. I guess that’s what happens when you have a working immune system.

For some of the others it was also relatively mild but many people had it worse, and for some it was much worse.

I wonder if it actually WAS coronavirus coming early (there’s some evidence for this in several countries) and if this is why we are so comparatively unaffected.

The West Country has even lower levels of coronavirus infestation than here, it would be interesting to know if they also had this early manifestation.

See - owe to Rich
See - owe to Rich
7 days ago

Well, I managed to get one of those Superdrug antibody tests, that the health authorities are trying to outlaw. It came back negative, which is disappointing (against a supposed false negative rate of 1 in 40).

So, how quickly do the antibodies disappear? Was there a different strain of virus going around, with suspiciously similar symptoms to COVID-19?

Anyway, I’ll just have to carry on staying alert!

Bloodyhell
Bloodyhell
5 days ago

It was until the MHRA shut the labs down for purely political reasons. The antibodies are very stable in a postal sample and the Abbott kit is good. There are 1000s of reliable results being held back. My contact in one such lab says they have about 3000 being held back with 14% being positive.

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