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    how long after having covid will i test positive

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    FAQ: Positive tests: Isolation, quarantine, and re

    HealthELife Alert icon

    Up-to-date information for the MIT community about COVID-19: 

    Covid Pass testing | Covid Pass testing results | COVID-19 updates | COVID-19 FAQ

    FAQ: Positive tests: Isolation, quarantine, and re-testing

    What happens after a positive test?

    If I don’t have symptoms, why won’t you do a second test to confirm that the first was not a “false positive?”

    How long will I have to isolate after a positive test?

    I’ve tested positive for COVID-19 infection; how soon do I need to be tested again?

    What is a “close contact?”

    I’ve been in close contact with someone who has tested positive; how long do I need to self-quarantine?

    If I’ve been vaccinated against COVID-19, do I still have to quarantine if I am identified as a close contact to someone who tests positive?

    What happens after a positive test?

    A positive PCR test has implications for both that individual and their close contacts. Here’s what happens in each case.

    I have no symptoms. Isolate for at least 5 full days after first positive test. Then wear a well-fitting mask at all times around others for an additional 5 days.I have symptoms of COVID-19. Isolate for at least 5 full days after symptom onset and until fever free for at least 24 hours. Then wear a well-fitting mask at all times around others for an additional 5 days.I am a close contact, and I am:Fully vaccinated and boosted, if eligible or tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days: No quarantine necessary. Get tested at least 5 days post exposure or if symptoms develop; self-monitor daily for symptoms through Day 10.Unvaccinated or vaccinated but not up to date on COVID-19 vaccination including booster: Quarantine for at least 5 full days from last potential exposure; Get tested 5 days post exposure or if symptoms develop; self-monitor daily for symptoms through Day 10.

    January 11, 2022

    If I don’t have symptoms, why won’t you do a second test to confirm that the first was not a “false positive?”

    Public health authorities consider a positive PCR test to be a true positive, so a subsequent negative test would not change the requirement for isolation. Research has shown that infected individuals may be asymptomatic but still able to spread the virus.

    December 21, 2021

    How long will I have to isolate after a positive test?

    At least 5 days. If you are:

    Asymptomatic: Isolate for 5 days after the first positive test. Then wear a well-fitting mask at all times around others for another 5 days,

    Symptomatic: Isolate for at least 5 days after symptom onset or until you have been fever free for at least 24 hours, whichever is longer. Then wear a well-fitting mask at all times around others for another 5 days,

    January 11, 2022

    I’ve tested positive for COVID-19 infection; how soon do I need to be tested again?

    Once you’ve tested positive for the virus, you do not need to be tested again for 90 days from symptom onset, if you became ill, or from the date of your positive test, if you remained asymptomatic.

    However, if you develop symptoms of COVID-19 during that three-month period, and if clinicians cannot identify another cause for these symptoms, you may need to be re-tested at that time.

    January 21, 2021

    What is a “close contact?”

    The CDC defines a “close contact” as “someone who was within six feet of an infected individual for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.”

    October 21, 2020

    I’ve been in close contact with someone who has tested positive; how long do I need to self-quarantine?

    If you are up to date on your COVID-19 vaccinations, including a booster shot, if eligible, or if you have had a positive test for COVID-19 in the last 90 days, CDC guidelines do not require you to quarantine, but you should be tested at least 5 days following the date of your exposure and monitor yourself for symptoms for 10 days. If you develop symptoms, you should self-isolate and be tested as soon as possible.

    If you are not vaccinated or are not up to date on your COVID-19 vaccinations, including a booster shot, if eligible, you must self-isolate for a full five days and then test. Even if you are negative, you should continue to wear a well-fitting mask around others at all times for another five full days..

    While you are quarantining, you must actively monitor yourself for symptoms and take your temperature at least once every day. You must continue this self-monitoring for a full 10 days from the date of your possible exposure to the virus, even after your 5-day quarantine has ended. If you develop even mild symptoms, you must immediately self-isolate and contact MIT’s contact-tracing team to arrange testing.

    Unless you develop symptoms, you do not need to be tested during the quarantine period. However, if you want to be tested, MIT’s contact tracers will work with you to schedule your test.

    January 11, 2022

    If I’ve been vaccinated against COVID-19, do I still have to quarantine if I am identified as a close contact to someone who tests positive?

    It depends. If you are eligible for a booster but have not yet received one, you are required to quarantine for 5 days. However, if you are up to date on your COVID-19 vaccinations, including a booster shot, if eligible, MIT and CDC guidelines do not require you to quarantine, but you should be tested at least 5 days following the date of your exposure and you should monitor yourself for symptoms for a full 10 days. If you develop symptoms, you should self-isolate and be tested as soon as possible.

    Source : medical.mit.edu

    Recovery and returning to normal activities after COVID

    Learn about what happens after you’ve recovered from COVID-19, and when you can leave isolation and return to normal activities.

    beginning of content

    Recovery and returning to normal activities after COVID-19

    8-minute read share via Facebook share via Twitter Listen

    If you develop symptoms such as severe shortness of breath or chest pain, call triple zero (000) immediately. Tell the call handler and the paramedics on arrival if you have COVID-19.

    How long does COVID-19 last? When will I recover?

    The infectious period varies from person to person. Most people with COVID-19 will have a mild illness and will recover in a few days.

    Generally, people are considered to be infectious from 48 hours before symptoms start. In high-risk settings, they may be considered infectious from 72 hours before symptoms start.

    People with mild illness are generally considered to be recovered after 7 days if they have been asymptomatic or have not developed any new symptoms during this time.

    Symptoms in children and babies are milder than those in adults, and some infected kids may not show any signs of being unwell.

    People at higher risk of serious illness may take weeks to recover. If a person develops long-term health problems caused by COVID-19, symptoms most commonly continue for 2 to 8 weeks after infection.

    What should I do if I’m still testing positive for COVID-19?

    Sometimes people can return a positive COVID-19 test although they have recovered. This is because people with COVID-19 have infected cells in their body that release the virus into the environment through breathing, sneezing or coughing, or through their faeces and urine. This is called ‘viral shedding.

    After recovering from COVID-19, some people can have non-infectious fragments of the virus left in their bodies for some time.

    Recovered cases don’t need to be retested within 12 weeks after release from isolation, regardless of their symptoms.

    If at least 12 weeks have passed after release from isolation, and a recovered case develops COVID-19 symptoms and becomes a close contact, they should be tested for COVID-19.

    Can I catch COVID-19 again?

    While your risk of catching COVID-19 again after recovering is lower, reinfection is still possible. The level of protection you have can also depend on factors like your age and immunosuppression.

    Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself against reinfection. It’s also important to keep up measures like hand washing, wearing a mask and physical distancing.

    Do I need a medical certificate or negative test result to return to work after isolating?

    You don't need a medical certificate and your employer should not ask you to be tested for COVID-19 to return to work.

    You need to continue to follow any restrictions that apply to the community in your state or territory.

    RESTRICTIONS — Use the COVID-19 Restriction Checker to find out what you can and can't do in your state or territory.

    When can I start exercising again?

    Exercise is an important part of recovering from COVID-19. If your symptoms were mild, you can start exercising again if:

    you’ve had 10 days of rest since symptoms started

    you’ve had at least 7 days with no symptoms, and

    you’re no longer taking any medications such as paracetamol

    Start with 15 minutes of light activity like walking or cycling, and see how you feel. Continue to slowly increase the duration and intensity of your exercise, paying careful attention to your heart rate and breathing rate.

    Stop exercising immediately and contact your healthcare provider if you have any:

    chest pain or palpitations. If you experience severe central crushing chest pain lasting more than 10 minutes call 000

    unexpected breathlessness

    signs of blood clotting, such as swollen calves

    If you’re recovering from moderate or severe illness, speak with your healthcare provider before returning to exercise.

    How long should I wait to have elective surgery after having COVID-19?

    If you have a confirmed case of COVID-19, you shouldn’t have elective surgery unless postponing the procedure creates a greater risk to your life.

    Your procedure should be delayed until you’re no longer infectious and you have recovered from COVID-19.

    If you’re having planned non-urgent surgery (Category 2 and 3) it’s recommended that you wait 7 weeks after your first COVID-19 positive test. This applies to people who were asymptomatic (no symptoms) or symptomatic.

    You should speak to your treating doctor about your circumstances.

    Do I need the vaccine if I’ve already had COVID-19 in the past?

    COVID-19 vaccines are recommended for people who've had COVID-19. If you’ve had a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 infection, you should delay COVID-19 vaccination for 3 months after recovering.

    A longer gap between infection and vaccination is likely to lead to a better immune response and result in longer protection from reinfection.

    Serological testing or other testing to detect current or previous infection with COVID-19 before vaccination is neither necessary nor recommended before vaccination.

    You may be vaccinated earlier than the recommended 3-month interval if you:

    are significantly immunocompromised and may be at greater risk of getting COVID-19 again

    starting an immunosuppressant

    have a job that requires you to be vaccinated

    Source : www.healthdirect.gov.au

    Some Test Positive for COVID for 10 Days or Longer

    As Omicron subvariants continue to spark an increase in COVID cases across the U.S., some people are finding that they are testing positive for long periods of time.

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    Lung Disease & Respiratory Health Coronavirus News

    WEBMD NEWS BRIEF

    Some Test Positive for COVID for 10 Days or Longer

    By Carolyn Crist

    June 1, 2022 -- As Omicron subvariants continue to spark an increase in COVID cases across the U.S., some people are finding that they are testing positive for long periods of time.

    At-home antigen tests may return positive results for 10 days -- or even longer, up to 14 days, according to The New York Times. Public health experts have said it’s been difficult to understand what that means in terms of contagiousness since rapid tests can’t always predict that with accuracy.

    “Some people may not be infectious at the end of their course, even if still antigen-positive, whereas others may be infectious, even if antigen-negative,” Yonatan Grad, MD, , an immunologist and infectious disease expert at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, told the newspaper.

    Rapid antigen tests detect proteins on the outside of the coronavirus, which can accurately pinpoint people who carry high levels of the virus. Studies have suggested that most people stop testing positive on these tests within the first 10 days of infection.

    But a growing group of people seem to be testing positive for longer. This could mean that some people may be shedding viral particles for a longer period or that the tests are picking up leftover viral debris as their infection fades, the Times reported.

    A few recent preprint studies, which haven’t yet been peer-reviewed, have indicated that some people who get the Omicron variant may test positive for longer and spread the virus for longer than previous strains.

    In one analysis of people who were tested in California during the Omicron wave in January, about 65% of people who retested were positive 5 days after their symptoms began or after their first positive test. That dropped in the following days for most people, but about 20% still tested positive on day 11.

    SLIDESHOW

    How mRNA Technology Works

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    1 / 11

    Where You’ve Seen mRNA Technology at Work

    The vaccines made by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna use mRNA to fight COVID-19. When these vaccines were rolled out, it was the first time mRNA was used on humans in vaccine technology. While the concept is new to the public, the research has been around since the early 1990s.

    2 / 11

    What are mRNA Vaccines?

    mRNA is a type of molecule that has the ability to deliver a specific set of instructions to your cells to make pieces of protein used by certain viruses. This could induce an immune response to fight off a viral attack.

    Harnessing this technology, scientists had been experimenting with mRNA’s potential use against deadly diseases like influenza, Ebola, and SARS.

    3 / 11

    mRNA Vaccines vs. Traditional Vaccines

    Traditional vaccines use weakened or inactivated germs to trigger an immune response in our body. mRNA vaccines use genetically engineered molecules that teach your cells to make a harmless piece of protein that belongs to a specific virus. This triggers your immune system to make antibodies that are designed to attack and destroy the viral protein.

    4 / 11

    Why Does mRNA Vaccine Use Protein?

    This mRNA technology uses viral protein because it plays an important role in a successful infection. The protein enables a virus to enter your body, attach itself to a cell, replicate, and spread. mRNA vaccines teach our cells to build antibodies against the protein particle and prevent infection and keep you from getting seriously ill.

    5 / 11

    How mRNA Vaccines Work

    Once mRNA technology instructs your cells to make the foreign protein particle, it shows up on the cell’s surface. The presence of the protein alerts your immune system to mount a defense and create antibodies to fight off what it thinks is a possible infection. Your body learns to recognize the viral protein as an enemy. In case of a real viral infection, your immune system is now prepared to destroy it and prevent serious illness.

    Source : www.webmd.com

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