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Cancer – Blood Test

February 1, 2021


So, is there a blood test that we can use to basically see if you have cancer? Well, nothing has panned out showing that there’s an indication to do screening with general blood tests or what we call tumor markers, but we do use tumor markers in cancer management and usually outside of maybe PSA, usually the tumor markers are used to see if you have a recurrence or if you’re having a progression of your disease. So with CEA that we use in colon and rectal cancer, we’ll look at it before your surgery, and then we’ll kind of monitor it over months to make sure it doesn’t go up to tell us that there may be a recurrence. We also use tumor markers like CA 19 9 and pancreatic cancer and CA 125 in ovarian cancer either to see if they all of a sudden come back up for recurrence, or sometimes we use it just to trend your response in addition to imaging. So we do use tumor markers and with PSA, it is something that can prompt a biopsy, but there’s no catch all lab tests unfortunately, that test for cancer.

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