Rapid, accurate diagnostic tests are critical to achieving control over the COVID-19 outbreak. A large number of serological tests have become available over the past few months, including rapid, point-of-care examinations. The objective of this research is to determine the accuracy of serological tests for COVID-19.
This research is a systematic review and meta-analysis that includes several data sources, like Medline, bioRxiv, and medRxiv. Researchers picked up studies with five participants or more that measured sensitivity or specificity (or both) of a COVID-19 serological test compared to the reference standard of viral culture or reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. The risk of bias was also assessed during the quality assessment of diagnostic accuracy results.
Out of 5016 references, 49 risks of bias assessments were facilitated. The identified high risk of patient selection bias was 98%, and an unclear risk of bias from the interpretation of serological tests was 73%. For each testing method, pooled sensitivity and specificity were not associated with the immunoglobulin class mentioned. The researchers found heterogeneity in all assessments. Sensitivity was higher in the last three weeks after symptom onset.
The research concluded that the available evidence does not support the continued use of point-of-care serological tests. Higher-quality clinical studies are required to assess the diagnostic accuracy of serological tests for COVID-19.