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CEA change

Anonymous user (not verified)

Before I had to switch to Erbitux my CEA had jumped from 22 to 83.  After only 3 cycles of Erbitux the CEA was down to 42...Encouraging.  After my last 4 wkly cycles now it's up to 66.....Hmmmm.   Not too bad, not too good.  A consistent trend will give more info. I'm still optimistic, but remain accepting of what ever comes in the future.  I think the best thing about stage IVb CA is that if it comes to an end, it's not a tragic sudden event. I have time to forgive and be forgiven, I have time to tidy up loose ends, I have time to reflect on the best times of my life, and my loved ones have time to ease the closure.  There's no reason for me to get depressed or weakened after 4 & 1/2 yrs of this. I still feel like there is nothing wrong, the 97 cycles of chemo hasn't bothered me much, I work at my job or my yard every day, I have to make concessions, but cancer doesn't rule my life.

The pic is about 3 yrs old, but it's one of my favorites. Karen & I had a chance to dive in Fiji with some great friends. We're saving for a Grand Caymen live aboard dive trip in Aug. Mastercard is going to love me. 

Sundanceh's picture
Posts: 4408
Joined: Jun 2009

Hey Dan

What might be a strong possibility is that the treatments are having positive effects.  For those where CEA is a solid marker, I think one always wants to see the numbers trending downward.

But, consider this...

When cancer cells die, they emit a protein into the bloodstream that can temporarily elevate CEA levels...this may be what is happening....and if so, that's an indication that you are responding positively.

You'll know if your CEA goes back the other way...and keeps going.....

CEA can rise up or down during treatment...only if the arrow continues to point upwards there could be something to look at.

Sounds like you're doing good and best wishes as you move forward.

AnnLouise's picture
Posts: 276
Joined: Mar 2013

and your Grand Caymen trip sounds wonderful! We are planning on a family vacation in Hawaii next Dec. 

My CEA has been slowly going up also which has me concerned. But as Craig says the radiation and dead cells could make it go up. Guess I will find out more after a CT next week. Thanks Craig for giving me an option to think of...my CEA numbers normally are accurate as far as detecting mets. 

You numbers are not bad and you attitude so optimistic...best to you and Karen and have a wonderful trip! ~ Ann




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