Are There Different Types Of Tumor Markers
There are different types of tumor markers for different types of cancer. Certain tumor markers are associated with only 1 type of cancer. Other tumor markers are associated with more than 1 cancer. However, many cancers have no known tumor markers, so tumor marker testing may not be an option. Researchers continue to look for new and more effective tumor markers.
What Do Your Lab Test Results Mean
Ever logged into MyChart to check on some lab test results, then just stared blankly at the screen once you saw them? Youre not alone.
Unless you work in the medical field, figuring out what all of those values mean and how to interpret them can sometimes be a challenge.
We sought insight from Adriana Maria Knopfelmacher-Couchonal, M.D., a specialist in Laboratory Medicine. Heres what she had to say.
How are lab tests used in cancer care?
What types of lab tests are used in cancer diagnosis and treatment?
There are too many different kinds to list. But the complete blood count is probably the most common lab test performed. It measures three main things:
What are the reference ranges for?
Reference ranges are designed to give people an idea of what normal values are for those categories. Theyre created by averaging the results of large numbers of healthy individuals.
What other lab tests are used in cancer care?
Doctors look at six different values to gauge liver function:
Limitations Of Blood Tumor Markers
An abnormal blood tumor marker result does not necessarily mean you have cancer. For example, only about one in four abnormal prostate-specific antigen results is due to cancer, and approximately 15% of prostate cancer is missed.
There are many reasons for abnormal PSA levels. Similarly, carcinoembryonic antigen , a tumor marker used in colon cancer, is only made in 70 to 80% of colon cancers. Therefore, 20 to 30% of people with colon cancer will not have a raised CEA level.
Tumor blood markers aren’t typically able to diagnose cancer independently but can be combined with other tests for diagnosis. Tumor blood markers can also:
- Monitor the progression of cancer to see whether or not treatments are working
- Determine whether or not cancer has recurred after treatment or surgery
- Help determine the cancer stage
- Help determine the best treatment
- See if a tumor is growing or spreading to other parts of the body
Positive test results may be due to a noncancerous condition. Your doctor can help you understand the results of tumor blood markers and what they mean for you.
|Tumor Blood Markers Tests|
You May Like: Can Pregnancy Blood Test Be Wrong
Once I Know My Risks What Are The Best Ways To Reduce My Chances Of Getting Cancer
This woman is properly dressed for working in sunlight, with sunscreen, long-sleeved shirt, hat and gloves. She has reduced her risk for skin cancer, the most common form of cancer in the U.S.
Taking preventive measures are the best way to reduce cancer risks in all its forms. Diet and lifestyle were studied in a 2011 Cancer Prevention study using more than 111,000 nonsmoking individuals and the findings were impressive: after 14 years, those who complied with maintaining a healthy body weight, eating foods that emphasized fruits and vegetables, limiting alcohol and exercising regularly had a 42 lower risk for death from all causes than those who didnt comply. Cancer deaths were 30 percent lower in men and 24 percent lower in women. .
Among the suggested guidelines:
Not using tobacco is the most preventable way to reduce cause of death from cancer. Each year, about 180,000 Americans die from cancer related to tobacco use.
What Do The Results Of A Cea Test Mean
Your healthcare provider uses CEA test results to learn more about cancer:
- Low CEA levels could mean a tumor is small and hasnt spread to other parts of your body. But certain types of cancer dont shed as much CEA, especially those limited to certain areas such as your brain, blood CEA tests may show low CEA levels. This is where your physician considers imaging techniques such as MRI.
- High CEA levels could mean a tumor is large or has spread to other parts of your body. But CEA cant be used for tumor staging or determining if your cancer has metastasized.
Your healthcare provider may also test your CEA levels throughout cancer treatment. If your CEA levels significantly decrease throughout treatment, it often means your treatment is working. Providers generally conduct a physical exam and imaging to determine this.
Don’t Miss: What Blood Type Is Universal Donor
Cancer Screening: Essential For Cancer Prevention
Many common forms of cancer can be detected at their earliest, most treatable stages through routine cancer screening tests. The American Cancer Society recommends routine screening for cancers of the prostate, breast, colon, cervix, uterus and in individuals with known risk factors, the lung. Blood tests can be used to detect early signs of many of these cancers, as can screening procedures, such as mammograms, colonoscopy or endoscopy exams and pap smears, among others. Screening recommendations vary from one individual to another according to age and level of risk, among other factors, so speak to your doctor about which screening tests you should have and how often they should be done.
Are There Any Risks To The Test
For a blood test: There is very little risk to having a blood test. You may have slight pain or bruising at the spot where the needle was put in, but most symptoms go away quickly.
For a urine test: There is no risk to a urine test.
For a biopsy: You may have a little bruising or bleeding at biopsy site. You may also have a little discomfort for a day or two.
Read Also: Why Does My Blood Pressure Go Up At Night
Complete Blood Count Normal Ranges
The numbers below show what the normal ranges for the main components of a CBC look like. Some components have different normal ranges for women and men.
Normal ranges for CBC components:
- White blood cells :
- Women: 4,500 to 10,000 cells/mcL
- Men: 4,500 to 10,000 cells/mcL
Keep in mind that there are many reasons that certain levels could be abnormal. Factors such as recent diet and activity may affect the results. Your cancer care team can help you understand your results, catch things early and avoid complications.
Imaging Tests To Look For Colorectal Cancer
Imaging tests use sound waves, x-rays, magnetic fields, or radioactive substances to create pictures of the inside of your body. Imaging tests may be done for a number of reasons, such as:
- To look at suspicious areas that might be cancer
- To learn how far cancer might have spread
- To help determine if treatment is working
- To look for signs of cancer coming back after treatment
Read Also: What Is Blood Sugar Test Called
What Are The General Warning Signs Of Cancer
While any persistent symptom warrants medical attention, watch for these signs and symptoms that could indicate a serious disease, including a malignancy:
- Unexplained weight loss with sudden loss of appetite that continues despite good nutrition.
- Persistent low-grade fever.
- White patches in the mouth.
- A lump or thickened area that can be felt through the skin.
Changes In Bladder Habits Or Symptoms Of Irritation
Bladder cancer can sometimes cause changes in urination, such as:
- Having to urinate more often than usual
- Pain or burning during urination
- Feeling as if you need to go right away, even when your bladder isnt full
- Having trouble urinating or having a weak urine stream
- Having to get up to urinate many times during the night
These symptoms are more likely to be caused by a urinary tract infection , bladder stones, an overactive bladder, or an enlarged prostate . Still, its important to have them checked by a doctor so that the cause can be found and treated, if needed.
Recommended Reading: Is Low White Blood Count Serious
Can Blood Work Detect Cancer
May 03, 2022
Having blood work performed as part of an annual wellness checkup is one of the most effective steps you can take to protect your health and maximize your well-being. Using the results of a routine blood test, such as a complete blood count , your physician can create a baseline for your overall health. By comparing the results of subsequent blood tests to the baseline, your physician can then identify changes that may warrant further investigation. That way, you might learn about a health issue early on, allowing you time to address it before you develop noticeable symptoms.
Among other things, routine blood testing can detect nutritional deficiencies, high cholesterol, anemia, diabetes, hormonal imbalances, infection and problems with thyroid, liver or kidney function. As such, blood work can provide a host of valuable health-related information. This may lead you to wonder if you could have cancer if your blood tests are normal.
Prognostic Value Of Inflammatory Biomarkers In Aged Patients With Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma
- 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Kagoshima University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima, Japan
- 2Department of Community-Based Medicine, Kagoshima University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima, Japan
- 3Department of Psychosomatic Internal Medicine, Kagoshima University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima, Japan
- 4Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Prosthodontics, Kagoshima University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima, Japan
- 5Department of Oral Surgery, Kagoshima Medical Center, National Hospital Organization, Kagoshima, Japan
- 6Department of Internal Medicine, Kagoshima Kouseiren Hospital, Kagoshima, Japan
- 7Pharmacological Department of Herbal Medicine, Kagoshima University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima, Japan
Background: Better prognostic biomarkers for oral squamous cell carcinoma must be developed, particularly within the realm of clinically and frequently administered tests, to advise appropriate clinical therapy and follow-up. In this study, we retrospectively investigated which of the several inflammation-nutrition indicators might predict the prognosis of patients with OSCC.
The pretreatment PNI had excellent predictive value for the 5-year OS and DFS of patients with OSCC. Future large-scale prospective studies with a high sample size are needed to verify our findings in OSCC patients.
Also Check: Best Blood Glucose Meter 2022
If You Do Have Bladder Cancer
If you are diagnosed with cancer, there is nothing that can prepare you for that news and most people find they experience a whirlwind of emotions. Along with rising panic, you may be feeling overwhelmed, frightened and probably angry.
As a newly diagnosed bladder cancer patient, you are embarking on a journey. Right now, as you begin this journey, the most important thing you should know is: you are not alone.
There are thousands of others living with this disease, and there are people and resources to help you find the information you need to help you make the best choices, and the support you need to get you through.
Whether you have to wait just half an hour or two weeks for results, it will seem like forever. Hang on in there this is all part of you getting the best treatment.
Read Also: Does Bladder Cancer Metastasis To Bone
The Role Of Cancer Tests
Cancer tests can be used to diagnose, screen for, and monitor cancer.
- Diagnosis: Cancer diagnosis tests can indicate the type of cancer you may have, which can guide your treatment options. This type of test can also rule out cancer.
- Screening: Cancer screening tests are used to check your body for the presence of disease before you have symptoms. Screening can help identify cancers early, when treatment is the most likely to work well.
- Monitoring: As cancer progresses or you go into remission, monitoring tests can guide your health care team to determine treatment success or cancer recurrence.
You May Like: Blood Pressure High Pulse Normal
What To Expect During A Tumour Marker Test
- It is a blood test, so the health care professional will take a blood sample from a vein in your arm, using a small needle.
- You usually dont need any special preparations for this test.
- You may experience slight pain or bruising at the spot where the needle was put in, but most symptoms go away quickly.
How Do Doctors Use Tumor Markers
Tumor markers can show different things about cancer. Tests for tumor markers can be used to help diagnose cancer. Tumor markers also can be used to see how far cancer has spread . Doctors can use them to see how well treatment is working and if cancer has come back after treatment.
Some tumor markers help doctors choose the most effective treatment. They also can be used to predict when to start treatment again.
Low or no levels of tumor markers usually mean that treatment is working or that cancer hasn’t come back.
Read Also: How To Get Blood Sugar Down Fast
What Kind Of Cancer Is Cea Test Used For
CEA doesnt necessarily tell you whether you have cancer and providers dont use it to screen for cancer. It instead should be used in people whove been previously diagnosed with certain types of cancer, most commonly colorectal cancer.
Providers also use CEA along with other tests as they diagnose, treat and follow-up on a range of cancers, including bladder,breast, lung,ovarian and thyroid cancer. Its typically used for monitoring response to treatment including relapses and to look for possible recurrences. But this test isnt used in isolation. Your provider will combine it with physical examination and imaging as needed.
Advantages Of Using Tumor Markers
Screening and early detection of cancer
Screening refers to looking for cancer in people who have no symptoms of the disease, while early detection is finding cancer at an early stage. Although tumor markers were first developed to test for cancer in people without symptoms, very few tumor markers have been found to be helpful in this way because most tumor markers have not been shown to detect cancer much earlier than they would have been found otherwise.
Aid in the diagnosis of cancer
In most cases, cancer can only be diagnosed by a biopsy and tumor markers are usually not used to diagnose cancer. However, tumor markers can help determine if a cancer is likely in some patients. It can also help diagnose the origin of cancer in patients presenting with advanced widespread disease.
Determine response to therapy
One of the most important uses for tumor markers is to monitor patients being treated for cancer. If the initially raised tumor marker level goes down with treatment, it indicates that the treatment is working and is having a beneficial effect. On the other hand, if the marker level goes up, then the treatment is probably not working and change of treatment should be considered.
Prognostic indicator of disease progression
Some newer tumor markers help to assess how aggressive a cancer is likely to be or even how well it might respond to certain drugs.
Indicate relapse during follow-up period
Also Check: Blood Clot After Venaseal Procedure
Early Warning Signs Of Cancer And Risk Factors
It may surprise you, but cancer cells lie dormant in all of us. Thats because the body is a living organism that does not produce every single cell totally perfect. When these defective cells begin to multiple uncontrollably, a tumor forms.
About one in four people die of cancer but that means three-fourths of the population will not. So while cancer is a major disease, and one that should never be taken lightly, it doesnt strike everyone, even those who may be at risk. In addition, many cancers are survivable today, with a growing number of people in remission and even cancer-free.
What causes cancer and its mortality rate and how can the average person reduce their risk? The causes are many genetics contribute up to 15 percent of the mortality rate for cancer but other cancer causes are suspect, from environmental influences and chemical exposure to our lifestyle. For example, in the Western hemisphere, breast, colon and prostate cancer are more frequent than in Asia. Could that have something to do with our Western way of life?
Do you know any of the warning signs? One 2013 international report found that more than a quarter of all individuals surveyed couldnt name even one symptom of lung cancer. Despite the fact that many cancers can be cured if caught early, we too often fail to take precautions, ignore symptoms or wait too long to seek treatment all of which can be deadly.
Tests Are Used To Screen For Different Types Of Cancer When A Person Does Not Have Symptoms
Scientists study screening tests to find those with the fewest harms and most benefits. Cancer screening trials also are meant to show whether early detection helps a person live longer or decreases a persons chance of dying from the disease. For some types of cancer, the chance of recovery is better if the disease is found and treated at an early stage.
Don’t Miss: Are Blood Pregnancy Tests More Accurate
What Are The Uses Of Tumor Markers
- Tumor markers are most often used to check whether a treatment is working or not. If the tumour marker level is going down, that means the treatment is working.
- Tumor markers are also used in certain cancers to watch for recurrence .
- Tumor markers can also be used along with other tests to help find cancer in a patient who has symptoms that are suspicious of cancer.
- Rarely, they are used to screen people at high risk for cancer.