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CA 29.27

Posts: 85
Joined: Jul 2012

Hi ladies I have not checked in for a while, so I am checking in. I am doing ok. Been on arimidex since 10/10/12. So far my side effects are my right hand goes to sleep all the time, and of course the hot flashes. I had blood work done last week and everything came back good. The dr did a test called Ca29. 27. It is a cancer test. I was wondering if anyone else has had this test done. My score came back as a 10.8 and the range is less than 38. Does any one know anything about this. I would appreciate any feedback. I hope everyone is doing well

Thanks ladies

TraciInLA's picture
Posts: 1994
Joined: Jul 2009

Hi, Patricia -

I'm about 3 years out from treatment, on Tamoxifen, and see my oncologist every 3 months. Thankfully, I have no signs of metastasis, but my oncologist does include the CA 27.29 in my bloodwork at each visit, as a routine measure.

The Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation has a great article explaining the benefits and limitations of the CA 27.29:


Like the article talks about, my oncologist also emphasized that tumor markers can go up for reasons unrelated to cancer, and said that what he watches for is not a one-time spike, but rather a trend upwards.

Hope that helps?


CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

I also get the Ca 27.29 every 3 months. Your score is awesome!!!

Mine just dropped to normal (I think it was ~37 last time). My CEA (another marker) is high, but coming down. Both are tumor markers, but CEA is less specific for breast.

The Ca 27.29 is what is called a tumor marker test. There is no perfect tumor marker test as all are fairly non-specific. Many physicians follow them as they may rise if a tumor is active and serial markers may help your physician figure out your response to treatment. Their use is controversial, but they can be another tool in their box to try.

However, for me personally, the markers WERE helpful when I was trying to figure out if I really had mets (after 21 year remission) because both my CEA and Ca 27.29 were very high. And they had been completely normal until then. Also, nearly 4 years since that mets, both markers are coming down--something that makes me feel more confident.

They are not for everyone and statistically not all that predictive, but they can be helpful.

"CA 27-29 is another marker that can be used to follow patients with breast cancer during or after treatment. This test measures the same marker as the CA 15-3 test, but in a different way. Although it is a newer test than CA 15-3, it’s not any better in detecting either early or advanced disease. And it’s not elevated in all people with breast cancer.

The normal level is usually less than 40 U/mL (units/milliliter), depending on the testing lab. This marker can be elevated in other cancers, too, such as cancers in the colon, stomach, kidney, lung, ovary, pancreas, uterus, and liver. It may also be higher than normal in some non-cancerous conditions, for instance, in women in the first trimester of pregnancy; and in people with endometriosis, ovarian cysts, non-cancerous breast disease, kidney stones, and liver disease."

Tumor Markers


pinkkari09's picture
Posts: 878
Joined: Sep 2009

My Onc. told me that these work with some and not with others. I'm pretty lucky that mine work, because the only other tests for me are pet scans, I'm TNBC. My last tumor marker was 270 or 280, as my cance is growing, this is to be expected. Your numbers are good. Sending prayers and happy thoughts your way.
Miles of Love,

Posts: 85
Joined: Jul 2012

Thanks so much ladies. I will look at both links to see what they say. Thanks so much for letting me know that my score is good, I had no idea what is good or bad with this score, and my Dr was no help the other day. I can breath a little easier now. Hope everyone is doing ok


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