You’re about to get a blood test to see if you have been exposed to Covid-19, the deadly disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
You’re hoping it will tell you that you have, right? That your blood is full of beautiful antibodies, the body’s soldiers called to fight when a known enemy invades our systems again.
You may dare to hope the discovery of antibodies in your blood means you will be immune to the virus in the future — you won’t ever get it again or give it to anyone else.
That’s the holy grail, of course — the ticket to freely visiting your parents, friends and loved ones again, to going back to work in the office again — basically, to getting your life back.
Not so fast.
In today’s reality, testing positive for antibodies to Covid-19 means nothing of the sort. In fact, it may not mean much at all — at least right now.
There are still too many unknowns, both about the accuracy of the antibody tests that are available and about the nature of the virus itself.
“It is clear that we’re still not where we need to be. It’s a brutal truth, but one that needs to be told,” said CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta in the May 5 episode of his podcast, called “Coronavirus: Fact vs. Fiction.”
“And this is exactly why I keep advising people to behave like you have the virus,” Gupta said.