Angara: 'Viral shedding', not reinfection, seen in 2nd positive coronavirus test result

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 05 2020 09:21 AM

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Sen. Sonny Angara said Tuesday he was "okay" after testing positive again for the novel coronavirus nearly a month since his recovery from the respiratory disease.

Angara said he had no symptoms, unlike when he first caught the disease in March and had fever, sore throat and body pain.

The senator said his doctors suspected "viral shedding" in which his test detected "fragments or remnants of the virus rather than a re-infection."

Angara, 47, had announced on April 6 he had recovered from the contagious disease. On April 17, he posted a photo showing he had been reunited with his family.

His latest positive result for coronavirus came out in a swab test he took while preparing for his second plasma donation to help in the treatment of coronavirus patients.

Angara said his wife and children were negative for the pathogen.

Experts say there are several ways discharged patients could fall ill with the virus again, Reuters reported. Convalescing patients might not build up enough antibodies to develop immunity to SARS-CoV-2, and are being infected again. The virus also could be “biphasic,” meaning it lies dormant before creating new symptoms.

Other experts have also raised the possibility of “antibody-dependent enhancement,” which means exposure to viruses might make patients more at risk of further infections and worse symptoms.

Philippine Health Secretary Francisco Duque III earlier advised the public to wait for the World Health Organization's take on the issue. With a report from Reuters