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NED means Zero CEA?

lp1964's picture
Posts: 1240
Joined: Jun 2013

I'm wondering when you have NED does the CEA have to be zero?


thxmiker's picture
Posts: 1282
Joined: Oct 2010

One's CEA not going up and under a predetermined number is considered NEA.     Woo Hoo for you!  The CEA is not the only number to be determinate of one's cancer.  


Many have had NED status and yet have cancer.  (Sorry to rain on one's parade.)  Take life every day as a special gift.  Return that gift to every one you meet.  That is the real meaning of life!  When we can infleuence people in the positvie and make a real difference in people's life, that is the menaing of life.  Everything else, is not necessarily memorable.  Live life like it means a difference to everyone you meet. Then Life was memeorable and meaningful. 


OK, I am off the soap box.

Best Always,  mike


PS I have been diagnose twice as NED.  I still choose to live my life to help others.  NED should be more of a state of mine and being then a diagnosis from a doctor.   I met a person that we had Chemo together many times.  He said he is positive and that Chemo did not do well for him. He got rid of Colon Cancer and now has 44% leukemia. What a trade off!  At the same time he was enjoying life.  I am in a similar posistion, I lessened my cancer, yet it is still there. Bottom line: Enjoy and Live life!  We do not know how long we are going to be here and how many we can infleuence. 


joemetz's picture
Posts: 493
Joined: Nov 2011

hi Mike

I was learking around here this morning, and came across your post.... and your LIVE LIFE message.

thank you thank you thank you.

I really needed that today.

I've been having a bit of a personal struggle with my emotions, my faith and everything going on. I am unable to work as much as I used to, or as much as i would like to. The last three months of treatments have "changed me" physically and emotionally. yet, i did get some good news this week as I am not NED (i never will be), yet I am NPD. (No Progression of Disease).

this battle can be so hard, yet good words and good works can help us fulfill why we are hear.

i keep reminding myself... everyone dies. we just happen to know we most likely are going to die, much much sooner than others around us and we take these poisenous drugs to buy us to the next PET or CT scan... for me, I am living 3 months at a time.

and, my challenge is to change my stinking-thinking around so I'm not in this pitty party about it... and to do as you say, and redirect my attention to help others, positively affect others and to enjoy every day. instead, as of late... i find myself stuck in worry and I also find myself wanting to get "everything in order" for when that time comes so no one else has to ever worry about the details of all that stuff like a funeral, burial etc.


anyway... thank you!



Posts: 1280
Joined: Apr 2012

You are way to young to be thinking of dying. At 81, I can do that, but not you.  Just take it a day at a time and hope for the best.  

Hooley's picture
Posts: 156
Joined: Aug 2012

What a beautiful post.   Very sincere and so so true

herdizziness's picture
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

From 0 to 2.5 Smokers usually can go up to 5.  And people without cancer can also have high ranges on occasion. Forme the one occasion I was NED a couple of years ago was a 5.

Winter Marie

joemetz's picture
Posts: 493
Joined: Nov 2011

greetings there winter marie

thanks for your post.

are you still on treatments?  

sorry, i haven't been on here in awhile, and was curious as to what you're up to and what's happening with you.



p.s. my chemo brain and all the names here and on the FB sites, gets me confused sometimes. I need to make a chart of everyones battles... but that would be too detailed.

herdizziness's picture
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

Hey Joe, I have been off treatment since sometime in April, for my liver surgery and then during colonoscopy a tumor was discovered in my sigmoid colon, so have been waiting on date with surgeon to get rid of that before going back on treatment.  Finally ha ve an appointment with him on the 28th.

Glad to hear you have no progression!  I think Phil has been that way for many years.

Winter Marie

Posts: 2215
Joined: Oct 2011

CEA doesnt work for everyone. I am in the 10% minority where it is not an indicator. My CEA has never been above 1.2 even when there were known tumors in me.

Posts: 509
Joined: Sep 2012

Ditto ... never had been over 1 and have had huge tumors.  NED comes from multiple tests and scans ... and means No Evidence of Disease .. not that there IS no disease .. sometimes it lurks and hides. Frown

Posts: 271
Joined: Nov 2011

Laz,  Labcorp  has a high normal of 3.9 ng/mL for non smokers.  I've never heard anyone, in five years, say they had a CEA of zero.  

I read a study where CEA's were done on non cancer patients over the age of 60, 70 and 80.  All the non cancer patients had higher than expected CEA's.  The older they were, the higher the readings.  The study said some patients with the highest readings were found to have anything from arthritis to skin conditions,  lung problems, etc.   I'm sorry, I didn't save that actual info but here's a statement from another study I'd saved in an email. 


Most normal persons have detectable concentrations of circulating CEA. Approximately 85% of adults have CEA levels less than 2.5 ng/mL, while 95% have levels less than 5.0 ng/mL. CEA levels are slightly higher in men than women. The median level is 3.4 ng/mL in men and 2.5 ug/mL in women. Healthy persons seldom have levels above 10 ng/mL.


LivinginNH's picture
Posts: 1458
Joined: Apr 2010

My Rick was that "one" you mentioned - his CEA was ALWAYS .05.  So, obviously, his CEA wasn't a marker for tumors.  

pete43lost_at_sea's picture
Posts: 3908
Joined: Nov 2010

ned is a false goal, love your life now. it takes one tumour initiating cell to make a cell, every met starts as one or more cells, often surrounded by platlets to hide from our immune system. 

if you want to be really sure do a ctc test, or the macropage malignancy test, that looks at the protiens remnant inside.

i was ned for 4 months , it was wonderful having my head in the sand, cancer comes back and kicks but but, even if you dont have one.

an ounce of prevention. your health and immune system your best defense. chemo is a false security, that no security at all.

the ketogenic diet is working well, with lifestyle love and meditation the pillars of my remission plan.

for details


its a really great question, i asked something close back in january when i was ned, i am almost ned.



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