Common Cold May Trigger Positive COVID-19 Antibody Test


  • There are three types of COVID-19 tests: molecular, antigen and antibody. Molecular and antigen tests detect active infections, whereas the antibody test will tell you if you’ve developed antibodies in response to a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection
  • There are seven different coronaviruses known to cause respiratory illness in humans. The antibodies created by these different coronaviruses appear very similar, and recovering from the common cold may trigger a positive antibody test for COVID-19, even if you were never infected with SARS-CoV-2 specifically
  • While experts at the Mayo Clinic claim cross-reactive antibody tests were an early problem that has been corrected and eliminated, the CDC has not confirmed this
  • A Singaporean study found common colds caused by the betacoronaviruses OC43 and HKU1 appear to make you more resistant to SARS-CoV-2 infection, and that the resulting immunity might last as long as 17 years
  • Other studies suggest immunity after COVID-19 infection may only last between two and 12 months …

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