What is the Difference Between COVID-19 Diagnostic Testing and Antibody Testing? 

COVID-19 testing is something that has been a hot topic of discussion since the virus made its way into the United States, with many questions about the different types of testing and when to get tested. AFC Urgent Care Dedham offers COVID-19 diagnostic swab testing as well as antibody testing seven days a week, with results in as little as 1-2 days. Learn about the differences in types of testing and which test will most benefit your health.

Diagnostic Testing

Diagnostic testing is used to diagnose a current and active case of COVID. This testing is done using a nasal swab of the lower nasal cavity. Once the swab is collected, it’s sent off the be tested our on-site laboratory. The patient typically receives their results within 2 business days of the swab being taken, depending on lab capacity. 

Antibody Testing 

Antibody testing looks for the presence of antibodies in your immune system. Antibodies present as a specific type of protein in your blood, so a simple blood draw will be performed. Once the blood is collected, it is sent to a laboratory and the patient should receive results within 2 business days. It’s important to note that even if your blood shows the presence of antibodies, experts aren’t sure how long that “immunity” lasts. If the virus mutates at all and you’re exposed again, you may still be susceptible to infection. Even with a positive antibody test you should use all recommended coronavirus precautions to limit your risk of re-exposure. 

Which Test is Right for You? 

Diagnostic testing is idea for patients who are showing symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to someone who has tested positive to the virus in the last fourteen days. Symptoms that may be related to COVID-19 include high fever, dry cough, shortness of breath and body aches. 

Antibody testing is ideal for patients who are asymptomatic and are unsure if they have previously been exposed to the coronavirus, especially if it was potentially over fourteen days prior to testing. Antibodies take up to ten days post-exposure to form, while symptoms of COVID-19 may begin up to fourteen days after exposure. Regardless of which test you take, it is critical to continue observing local and state safety guidelines by continuing to practice social distancing and wearing protective masks or face coverings in public.

COVID-19 Diagnostic & Antibody Testing in Dedham, MA

If you’re interested in antibody testing, or if you believe you need diagnostic testing, we can help! Our facility is equipped for both types of testing and we practice the highest level of sanitation and precautions possible to prevent the spread of COVID-19 within our facility. Walk-in testing is available, or you can check in online to reserve your spot. For questions, please call 781-461-0200.