Tumor Marker Levels

Becky58 Member Posts: 22
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
How much emphasis did any of you put on your Tumor Marker levels? We've been told not to pay that close attention to them because they truly only go by the CTScan then we've been told well yeah they do use them some to give them an idea if something is going on. It's so confusing. My dad had his appointment and treatment this past Monday and before they left the nurse coordinator came out and told my mom and sister they got the results and the levels had increased some from in the 700's to into the 900's the CTScan before this one we were told the cancer had stablized. I know there are other things that can effect this level but how concerned should we be?


  • CAMaura
    CAMaura Member Posts: 719 Member
    Hi Becky - There seems to be a variety of views about CEA - or the tumor marker in a one's blood. I just spoke with my Gastroenterologist this afternoon; this is what he had to say. The CEA is put into the bloodstream by the tumor; some tumors give off a reading, some don't. It is nice when they do as is makes if easier for the doc to know to start looking - possibly in other organs - for a tumor. Other times it confirms things - say, after a routine colonoscopy. Every body works differently, so I know that others will chime in and say that CEA levels don't really mean much.....but in my case they do. My body has worked in relation to the tumor being present and then being taken out; right now, with no recurrence, my level remains super low. I may not have really answered any of your questions....but the CEA can be good info for docs.....if the body complies. Mine are able to use it - and I feel lucky. (Smoking can affect CEA levels.) Hope this helped a bit. - Maura