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CA-125 and other business

ptharp
Posts: 190
Joined: Oct 2012

Well, I wrote on this board a couple of weeks ago about a test I had for Thyroid. It is fine!!!  My blood work was redone and came back normal. All scans were normal. Yea!  I have a question though...has anyone had their CA-125 tested at two different labs? Did you notice the readings are different. When I had me Ca-125 done during treatment it was always 7. The lab was Quest. Once I had to get it done at quest and it was 12. Well I had to have a CA-125 before my 3 month check-up because I am in a clinical trial and they require it. I had to have it done at Nordx. I did not have a chance. It came back at 13.5. I should not be surprised because it read higher before and went back down when I went ot my regular lab, but it still bothered me. Has anyone had their labs go up and down?

Tethys41's picture
Tethys41
Posts: 1056
Joined: Sep 2010

Check the reference range on your test results.  Based on the fact that your second reading contains a decimal, I'm guessing that the reference range for that test is 0-35, whereas the one without the decimal is probably 0-20. 

Alexandra's picture
Alexandra
Posts: 1205
Joined: Jul 2012

I have always done bloodwork at the same lab and never double checked them. In November - 6. In January - 6. Yesterday - 4.

Here's an interesting thread discussing variations in CA125 and testing specifications. Your 1.5 point variation is well within acceptable margin and nothing to worry about.

http://www.inspire.com/groups/ovarian-cancer-national-alliance/discussion/machine-variation-in-ca-125-detection/

http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/08/briefing/2008-4403b1-03%20ARCHITECT% 20CA125II%20Package%20Insert%20.pdf

http://theoncologist.alphamedpress.org/content/7/5/437.full

 

lovesanimals's picture
lovesanimals
Posts: 1234
Joined: Sep 2011

Congratulations on the clean scans!  I too wouldn't worry about your latest CA 125.  The journey of my CA 125 has gone something like this:  2,800+ (before surgery), 7 (after surgery and before any chemo), 7, 6, 6, 5, 3, 7, 6.  All of my lab work was done at the same location except for the last one.  When my marker jumped from 3 to 7 in three months, I of course was very worried but my oncologist wasn't.  Thankfully, the next CA 125 went down to 6.  I truly understand your anxiety but the 1.5 point variation is not much of a change and you're well within normal.  Celebrate the good results and I hope you have a great weekend!

Kelly

Alexandra's picture
Alexandra
Posts: 1205
Joined: Jul 2012

IF YOU ARE EASILY UPSET BY TALKING ABOUT "PROGNOSIS" - DON'T READ THIS. IT'S NOT ABOUT POPULATION AVERAGES, IT'S ABOUT INDIVIDUAL PROGNOSIS

My doctor never discussed CA-125 behavior with me outside of the usual "0 - 35 is normal; going down is good, trending up signals recurrence".

I've found an article that talks in depth about CA-125 static and kinetic parameters (prechemotherapy CA-125, postchemotherapy CA-125, preoperative CA-125, postoperative CA-125, CA-125 half-life, CA-125 nadir level, time to reach nadir level, CA-125 Area Under the Curve) in relation to the individual prognosis. I went back to my bloodwork records, dumped all test dates and CA-125 measurements into Excel and did some simple math; the answers rocked my world and changed everything I thought about my treatment success so far.

Here's the link to the article: http://www.ovarianresearch.com/content/2/1/13

Link to CA-125 definitions for response and progression: http://www.gcig.igcs.org/CA125/respdef_nov2005.pdf 

Bstrange's picture
Bstrange
Posts: 87
Joined: Feb 2009

 

 Sorry about that! iPad!

Glad to be done's picture
Glad to be done
Posts: 558
Joined: Jul 2012

Hi Pam.  Funny you should ask this question yesterday as I had a conversation with my onc about it at my check up yesterday.  It was my last one with her because we move next Saturday.  Anyway......She told me when I have my next ca125 test to NOT be alarmed that it may be 20 or a little higher. She pointed out that I have always had my blood draws done at the same lab and now I will be going to a new one and that will make it different.  It could also make it go lower but she wanted me to be prepared for the fact it may go up...  She said I need you to remember this..  Haha she knows how stressed I get about my numbers...  I would not worry about it.    Back in January I had my test and it came back 19.  I FREAkED out but doctor said "I don't know why you are worried because I am not". This appt.  it is back down to my norm. 13...  It was probably the stomach bug I was getting over at the time.

 

 

scatsm's picture
scatsm
Posts: 236
Joined: Apr 2013

I also worry constantly about my CA125. Mine was over 2200 at diagnosis, but went down to 4 after surgery and stayed there til last time when I had my bloodwork done at another lab and it went up to 6.9. Although I know that the range is 0-35 for normal, and my oncologist told me that anything under 12 is statistically 0, I find myself worrying as it gets closer to the time for my 3 month checkup. Does this anxiety ever get better? I've been out of treatment for 15 months now and seem to be more anxious now than I was during and right after it was over. Of couse it didn't help that in September 2012 I was diagnosed with BRCA and had a BMX in January. I am BRCA2 and managed to get, not avoid, both cancers!

 

Susan

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