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Curr Oncol. 2014 Feb;21(1):e1-7. doi: 10.3747/co.21.1711.

Diagnostic value of preoperative serum carcinoembryonic antigen and carbohydrate antigen 19-9 in colorectal cancer.

Author information

1
Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery, Kartal Kosuyolu High Specialty Training and Research Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey.
2
Department of General Surgery, Bursa Sevket Yilmaz Training and Research Hospital, Bursa, Turkey.
3
Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery, Turkiye High Specialty Training and Research Hospital, Ankara, Turkey.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Since the first introduction of tumour markers, their usefulness for diagnosis has been a challenging question. The aim of the present prospective study was to investigate, in colorectal cancer patients, the relationship between preoperative tumour marker concentrations and various clinical variables.

METHODS:

The study prospectively enrolled 131 consecutive patients with a confirmed diagnosis of colorectal carcinoma and 131 age- and sex-matched control subjects with no malignancy. The relationships of the tumour markers carcinoembryonic antigen (cea) and carbohydrate antigen (ca) 19-9 with disease stage, tumour differentiation (grade), mucus production, liver function tests, T stage, N stage, M stage were investigated.

RESULTS:

Serum concentrations of cea were significantly higher in the patient group than in the control group (p = 0.001); they were also significantly higher in stage iii (p = 0.018) and iv disease (p = 0.001) than in stage i. Serum concentrations of cea were significantly elevated in the presence of spread to lymph nodes (p = 0.005) in the patient group. Levels of both tumour markers were significantly elevated in the presence of distant metastasis in the patient group (p = 0.005 for cea; p = 0.004 for ca 19-9).

CONCLUSIONS:

Preoperative levels of cea and ca 19-9 might provide an estimate of lymph node invasion and distant metastasis in colorectal cancer patients.

KEYWORDS:

Carbohydrate antigen 19-9; carcinoembryonic antigen; colorectal cancer

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