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Dig Liver Dis. 2009 May;41(5):357-63. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2008.04.002. Epub 2008 Jul 3.

Persistent elevation of serum CA 19-9 with no evidence of malignant disease.

Author information

1
Department of Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology, Bentivoglio Hospital, Bologna, Italy. maurizio.ventrucci@ausl.bo.it

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Serum CA 19-9 is the mainstay marker for the diagnosis of biliopancreatic malignancies, though a persistent elevation can also be observed in various benign diseases.

AIMS:

In this study, a marked increase of serum CA 19-9 was seen in 10 patients who had no evidence of malignant disease. The possible causes of this finding are discussed.

PATIENTS:

Nine women and one man were studied, whose admitting diagnoses were as follows: pulmonary fibrosis in two, diabetes in two, non-ulcer dyspepsia in two, obesity in one, acute diarrhoea in one, colon diverticula in one and gastric ulcer in one.

METHODS:

Routine blood tests, tumour marker determinations, imaging studies and endoscopy were carried out at admission.

RESULTS:

Serum CA 19-9 levels ranged from 112 to 1338 IU/ml (mean 517 IU/ml). Abdominal ultrasonography, CT-scan, upper gastrointestinal X-ray series and gastrointestinal endoscopies were negative for malignancy. During the follow-up period (range 2-7 years) serum CA 19-9 values were persistently elevated in all patients.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our study shows that persistent and significant elevation of serum CA 19-9 can be found in non-malignant and non-cholestatic disease.

PMID:
18602352
DOI:
10.1016/j.dld.2008.04.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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