Definitions for "CA-125"
A tumor marker, blood level of which can be used to detect malignancy or its progression. This marker is frequently used to detect ovarian cancer; however, some benign condition can also elevate the level of CA-125.
A cancer associated antigen that can be tested for by a blood test. If the test is positive (greater than 35), then the antigen is present in the blood and a cancer is present. The test is usually done for ovarian cancers. Unfortunately, it is not specific and many other benign conditions can also cause an positive test. It is a good test to use to monitor the result of treatment for a known ovarian cancer. If it was initially elevated and does not revert to less than 35, then the cancer is still present. If it reverts to normal with chemotherapy, it is good but still about one half the patients have persistent cancer. So, a normal value is meaningless. A positive value in a person with no known cancer, no symptoms of cancer and no findings suggestive of cancer on examination, will be wrong 99 out of a hundred times. This why it cannot be used to screen for ovarian cancers.
A protein sometimes found in an increased amount in the blood, other body fluids, or tissues and that may suggest the presence of ovarian or breast cancer.