Taking part in the In-home COVID-19 Antibody Test

in #covid-1928 days ago

Before I left for Spain, I had a letter through the post asking if I would be willing to take part in a COVID-19 in-home antibody testing research study. I didn't see any reason why not, apart from the fact I hate needles, and so I agreed, and the test kit was waiting for me when I returned home early this morning.

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The study is being conducted by MORI, who are an independent research organisation, on behalf of the Department of Health and Social Care. The aim is to help the UK Government 'understand how many people in England may have already been infected by the virus that causes COVID-19.

Although I live alone, and generally keep myself to myself, I have been shopping for food regularly, have occasionally met with friends (in my bubble), and also taken two trips to Spain in the past 3 months. I suspect the biggest chance to pick up the virus would be during these flights, where social distancing is almost impossible, even though the airports feel super clean, masks are mandatory, and the flights themselves have not been busy at all.

So yeah, I was interested to see what the result said (although not guaranteed to be accurate, and have just completed the process. Here's how it went.....

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The pack came with a booklet detailing the steps in a straightforward manor, and there was also a cotton swab and a small round plaster, which did actually come in quite handy!

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I've not used a 'Lancet' before, and after opening the first and thinking that it was a duffer, I opened the 2nd and though that one was nonfunctional also until i pressed it against my right index finger. Ouch! I guess the first Lancet wasn't a duffer either.

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It was quite easy to drip the blood onto the testing stick, a nice drop appeared on my finger in no time and I didn't need to squeeze it at all.

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Ten minutes passed quickly, as I was taking photos of the booklet for the blogging purposes. And so, the result.....

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..... looks negative to me.

I actually think I would have preferred a positive result, and the feeling of knowing I was unaffected by the virus, but I guess it shows that international travel can be safe.

Following the test, I had the option of submitting the results. 50 or so questions later, and after uploading the final image above, I was finished.

Thank you very much for taking part in this important study about the COVID-19 testing process. The study will help the Government develop its approach to COVID-19 testing.

The results of the study will be available on the Imperial College London dedicated REACT webpage in due course: https://www.imperial.ac.uk/medicine/research-and-impact/groups/react-study/real-time-assessment-of-community-transmission-findings/.

Nice to have the link jotted down somewhere, so I can check the results 'in due course'.

I hope all is well with you, cheers,

Asher

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Yowser with that level of complexity there's no way there going to get a valid sample from a represntative cross section of the uk population!

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That is worrying - it was pretty self-explanatory!

You're educated.

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The leaflet reminded me of the books I was reading aged 5/6!

test
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Thanks for the heads up and the delegation. I've delegated some HP so you can remove it now, cheers!

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With the amount of steps and instruction, you would need someone who is capable of some level of technical insight and reasoning. I don't know how how that is in the UK, but in my country this would be a big problem, if we were to require results from every section of the population.

A small confirmation that travel might be safe, gives me hope for future vacation possibilities though.

I can't imagine it would be too tough to follow for most, but this is the second concerned comment so maybe I am wrong!

As I get older I realize more and more that up to a certain point I've been living in a bubble of like-minded people, friends, colleagues that have had a certain education. But there are other neighborhoods, communities, villages, towns, districts, where people have been living their whole lives in a specific routine.

For example a farmer that never left town, learned the ropes from his father, and is the best farmer in the country and knows all the tricks. But give him a calculator and he will have a hard time figuring its usage out at first. Same concept would apply to this 9 step situation.

Very true. The best farmer could also look rather average to one in another village who's met many farmers and learned skills not known to the other?

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Yeah, that's one part of it. Another part is that certain areas are also sort of brainwashed (for lack of a better word) by societal norms and these people live to be followers without having much independent thought. These are the people politicians bank on. But that's a different topic.

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I wanna see you bleeeeed!

Women, so brutal!

Yes we are :)

You had to needle yourself. Next level you can step up to junkie level.

I did, and due to my lack of knowledge it went without too much concern - next time i'll be more weary of pressing fire!

Share needles to save money?

That pretty good volunteer as a take part covid-19 test for research purpose, this is very tough situation for everyone, covid-19 break all chain and co-relation and its need much more time for recovery.

It wasn't too much effort as the kit was delivered to my door - I'd be less likely to take part if I had to go anywhere!

I don't know if no antibodies is good or bad, if accurate it does show you have been careful and lucky to have not been exposed to it I guess. The first time I had to do the finger prick thing for my diabetes was not fun, and after awhile I just gave up the testing, to expensive and to annoying.

I think showing you've got the antibodies (and are still alive) is a good thing!

Frequent testing for diabetes - is that to check blood sugar? I guess you've found the diet to suit and unless feeling unwell there is no real need to test?

Pretty much on the diabetes testing, I know what foods will blast me out, prior to covid I was getting a 3 month A1C test done since that is what they use to adjust the meds with.

They say you should still test daily, but for the last two years I have not. I tried re-testing after my lung issue, but gave up pretty quick. There is no consistency between the doctors on when to test or how often a day to test, so I just decided not to test. If the doctors can not agree on when to test then what good is the testing other than to test for the sake of testing.

You should test before breakfast/coffee, in the morning. It gives you somewhere to begin your day. If you exercise a lot- after you exercise to make sure your blood sugar doesn't get too low. 1.2 hours after you start your meal. Your blood sugar should be less than 180. I can't believe they can't decide when it should be done.

Yikes!

It is good to test to make sure your body is working well for you. :))

!tip

I have had over the course of the last 15 years several doctors talk about testing. Some like you said say in the morning, some before a meal, some say after a meal, some say before exercising, some after exercising. So since they could never figure it out, I just eventually gave up and was just doing the A1C test every three month, then the last doctor said I only need to do the A1C every six months, that was before Covid lock down, so well if I start to feel like crapola again, then I'll go get a test somewhere.

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It would be nice if the doctors were all on the same page.

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Oee but this is sweet. Would totally participate in this one as well actually. I had ordered antibody tests months ago already because surely one day they will be required for some reason, but I did not have a legitimate reason to test them as yet actually.

But that ones were with sending to the lab, versus this indicator..which is way cooler..

Get me one in Holland dude :D

If I get another test kit and haven't had any symptoms I'll post it ya :)

Glad to hear the result was negative Asher, but I totally get what you mean. I had a bout of feeling super yuck back in late March (enough to go to the doctor, especially since I'd just visited my elderly mother a couple weeks prior) but not yuck enough for them to test me. I had an... interesting conversation with my youngest (20 years old) later, saying I was somewhat disappointed I hadn't been tested since it would be reassuring to know I'd had it and come through okay. She was of the mindset that since there's still so much we don't know, having it in any form was still scary.

At any rate, here's to your continued good health! !BEER

Yeah, testing should be widespread and frequent in my opinion, but I understand that kits cost money and are not perfect.

Thank you, same to you and all!


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My wife went to the doctor today after a month of coughing and they didn't even bother testing her - saying that if she did have it earlier, it wouldn't show anymore... Weird.

Hmm, not sure about that - I thought you carried the antibodies for life?

That is what I thought, but I guess it depends how they test. Or even the doctors aren't sure :)

I actually think I would have preferred a positive result,

Don't talk nonsense!!!!!! 😠

Why is it nonsense?

A positive result would show I've had the virus and defeated it without symptoms - surely the best result!

If it's positive that means you still got the virus? So there's a chance it could go either way...

Got but had the virus long enough to produce antibodies to tackle it, and as I've felt fine it would mean my body defeated it.

I'm glad Asher that the results wete negative as COVID can get serious in a blink of an eye.
A lot of doctors, science reports and from several people I know personally that got infected shows the number of antibodies a survivor has goes down drastically each month and anywhere from 1-6 months (most folks i know said by 3rd month) the antibodies are gone and thus have a chance for reinfection.
It is also said that the reinfection usually become more potent.
Also that kind of test has a lower chance of identifying the antigens and so it might have come out negative but the more accurate PCR swab test yields better results

...by testing, you've voluntarily put yourself on a register and in doing so make yourself liable to massive fines.
(it's all about wealth transfer, nothing to do with your well being.Just sayin')

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I've just got back from Spain and so the government (not an 'anon' study) know where I've been, my phone number, and where I live.

Work are OK with me self-isolating these next two weeks and all I'll be doing is going for some groceries.

ok, you're already on the radar!

Good luck matey.

That research must be costing a fortune, but I would also have wanted a positive result as it obviously means you would have immunity. One can then also help those that are ill with the virus by donating plasma, thus saving lives.
Very interesting, I wonder if they would be asking those with positive results if they would consider becoming plasma donors if they were found to have high levels of antibodies?

I get what you're saying about wanting a positive result. I sometimes wonder/hope that I got it and was unaffected or only mildly affected by it. That way I would now be totally fine to travel without having to worry. It would be peace of mind.

Also, there is something about lancets and the thought of pricking my finger that gives me the shivers. I don't know if I could do it hahaha. If I could prick my arm or leg or almost anywhere but my finger I would be fine. Theres something about the fingers for me though. No thanks. Lol

Interesting......hard to say whether I would be delighted to discover the antibodies or not.

On one hand, having the antibodies would give me a sense of comfort knowing I had previously affected by COVID-19, but my health was so good it didn't even cause any symptoms.

However, not having the antibodies would be nice to know because that would give some confidence that my social distancing and hygiene measures I have been using in public spaces have been effective.

That’s a cool test. I took one at the drive through at Walgreens. That one you got to stick a swab way up your nose! Quite painful! I was negative as well. That one was not an antibody test though.

Well good news: you are ok! Bad news your blood is of no use! ;)

I know it's too late in the post to add an upvote and some HIVE luv, but I did post it to my twitter feed: #POSH