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The Lab Doctor Female Cancer Screening includes the following:
As tumor cells grow and multiply, some of their substances can increase and leak into the bloodstream or other fluids. Depending upon the tumor marker, it can be measured in blood, urine, stool or tissue. Some widely used tumor markers include: AFP, beta-HCG, CA 15-3, CA 19-9, CA 27.29, CA 125, CEA, and PSA. Some tumor markers are associated with many types of cancer; others, with as few as one. Some tumor markers are always elevated in specific cancers. Periodic testing can sometimes detect cancer earlier than could an ultrasound, x ray, or physical examination.
ALPHA-FETOPROTEIN (AFP). Elevated AFP typically indicates a primary liver tumor or a germ cell tumor of the ovary or testicle. AFP is a glycoprotein produced in high amounts by fetal tissue and is elevated during pregnancy. It is most widely used as a marker for hepatocellular carcinoma and testicular cancer but is also associated with ovarian cancer. Seventy percent of people with liver cancer have increased AFP levels. In China, where liver cancer rates are high, AFP is used as a screening test for that disease.
CARCINOEMBRYONIC ANTIGEN (CEA). CEA is a glycoprotein most often associated with colorectal cancer, and used to monitor patients with this type of cancer. Its most popular use is in early detection of relapse in individuals already treated for colorectal cancer. After surgery, serial measurements indicate the surgery's success and are used to detect early signs of recurrence. It has recently been found to be useful when measured during surgery for colorectal cancer to help determine prognosis and who will benefit from adjuvant treatment. CEA is measured in the blood plasma. It can be increased in many types of cancer: gastrointestinal, colorectal, ovarian, bladder, cervical, stomach, kidney, lung, pancreatic, liver, prostate, thyroid, melanoma, lymphoma, and breast. CEA may be elevated in smokers.
Cancer antigen 15-3 (CA 15-3) CA 15-3 is produced by cells in the breast and increased levels can be associated with breast cancer. However, adenocarcinomas of the ovary, lung, colon, and pancreas also express elevated CA 15-3 levels. A breast ultrasound and mammogram are recommended for evaluation of a breast mass or suspicion of breast cancer.
Cancer antigen 27-29 (CA 27-29) CA 27-29, also called breast carcinoma-associated antigen, is used as a marker for breast cancer. Eighty percent of women with breast cancer have an increased CA 27-29 level. Levels of CA 27-29 may also be increased in cancers of the colon, stomach, kidney, lung, ovary, pancreas, uterus, and liver.
Cancer antigen 125 (CA 125) Although produced by a number of cell types, CA 125 is primarily produced by ovarian cancer cells. Eighty percent of women with ovarian cancer have increased CA 125 levels. It contributes to a diagnosis when combined with an ultrasound and pelvic examination. A negative or normal result, however, does not guarantee the absence of cancer. A pelvic ultrasound is recommended in combination with the CA 125 if there is strong suspicion of Ovarian Cancer or pelvic pain.