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'I had a cough that I couldn't shake': Chesapeake woman's COVID-19 antibody test shows what she expected

COVID-19 antibody test plays big role in learning more about the disease
Posted at 10:28 PM, May 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-19 23:05:32-04

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - What is usually a light stroll for Mary Bibbs every day turned into a struggle in February.

“I was on the phone with one of my friends and I told her, 'If I continue to walk, I’m going to collapse,'" said Bibbs.

After several days of feeling under the weather with a constant cough and body aches, she went to Urgent Care.

“They told me that I had a severe viral infection; my blood count was very low,” she adds.

She tells News 3 her doctor told her it could be pneumonia and that her lungs were in bad shape.

“They gave me this little breathing machine that you use to increase your lung capacity to straighten my lungs.”

With antibiotics, immune boosters and rest, Bibbs was able to get back on her feet and get back into the community. At a recent COVID-19 testing event she was working, she decided to take the viral test and the antibody one.

Bibbs says, “They told me I didn’t have the coronavirus active, but I did have the antibodies.”

She says she wasn’t surprised.

“I immediately said to my husband, ‘I knew it!'"

Dr. Tiffany Sibley is the chief medical officer with Velocity Urgent Care. She says Bibbs' results helps give researchers more information about the coronavirus.

"It's sort of a tracker. It's seen the virus; it helps fight off the virus,” said Dr. Sibley.

Related: She's a fighter! 73-year-old COVID-19 survivor gets triumphant send-off from hospital

She says if your antibody results are positive, you gain some immunity and there is nothing to be afraid of.

“They will no longer be actively infected with the virus, so there would be no chance for them to be contagious,” she adds.

But she still encourages people to continue practicing social distancing.

Bibbs says she wants her positive results to be a sense of hope to people who are fighting.

“You can survive. You can look like me, have the risk factors that I have and know that you can still beat the virus.”

Velocity Urgent Care offers COVID-19 antibody test at all of their Hampton Roads locations. Click here for more information.

Click here for full coronavirus coverage.