What do Cancer blood tests do?

Cancer blood tests look at markers produced by cancerous and non-cancerous cells in response to cancer. These markers are used to help determine the cancer’s stage, assess if cancer has returned, and how well treatment is working. Some markers can be specific to one cancer, while others can be found in several different types of non-cancerous conditions. While not a confirmatory test, these markers can act as a screen to help take a step towards the correct diagnosis.

Cancer antigen 15-3 (CA 15-3) is a marker that will typically show high levels in cases of advanced breast cancer. However not every type of breast cancer will cause high CA 15-3 levels since some cancer cells won’t over-produce the antigen.

Cancer antigen 19-9 (CA 19-9) monitors pancreatic cancer. Healthy people have small amounts of CA 19-9, while high levels are often a sign of a growing tumor or non-cancerous disorders like cirrhosis or gallstones.

Cancer antigen 125 (CA 125) is often high in women with ovarian cancer. However, cancers in the uterus, cervix, colon, breast, lung, and some noncancerous substances can also produce similar results.

At ARCpoint Labs of Atlanta-Buckhead, our Cancer Panel, Female measures these tumor markers to screen for three different types of cancer from a blood draw. We also have tests for Male cancer screening as well.

Contact us to get your appointment today and let us help you understand the inner workings of your body.