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Laboratory Medicine

Test Directory / CA125


Brown clotted serum, gel barrier

Common AbbreviationsNA
Tube typeBrown clotted serum, gel barrier
Clinical IndicationCA125 is most useful in monitoring treatment in patients previously diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Post-operatively, the level of CA125 correlates with tumour bulk and is a prognostic indicator of clinical outcome. Measured serially, the levels of CA125 correspond with disease progression or regression. The rate of decline during initial therapy is an idenpendent prognostic inidcator in ovarian cancer. CA125 may also be used to help differentiate malignant from benign lesions in postmenopausal females and in surveillance following initial treatment. Benign conditions associated with elevated CA125 levels include endometriosis, acute pancreatitis, cirrhosis, peritonitis and inflammatory pelvic disease. Physiological conditions associated with elevated levels are menstruation and pregnancy.
Specimen TypeBlood
Sample typeSerum
Minimum Volume0.5mL If requesting more than 10 tests please send an additional brown clotted serum sample.
Special PrecautionsNo special requirements
Stability8 hours at 20 - 25°C, 5 days at 2 - 8°C and 24 weeks at -20°C
Turnaround TimeInpatient: 24 hours Outpatient/ GP: 24 hours
LaboratoryYork and Scarborough
Reference Interval0 - 35 kU/L
LimitationsAnalysis should not be performed on grossly haemolysed, icteric or lipaemic samples. The assay is unaffected by biotin < 143 nmol/L or < 35 ng/mL. No interference was observed from rheumatoid factors up to a concentration of 1200 IU/mL. In rare cases, interference due to extremely high titers of antibodies to analyte specific antibodies, streptavidin or ruthenium can occur. In vitro tests were performed on 16 commonly used pharmaceuticals. No interference with the assay was found. In addition, several special cancer drugs were tested. No interference with the assay was found. Samples should not be taken from patients receiving therapy with high biotin doses (i.e. > 5 mg/day) until at least 8 hours following the last biotin administration.
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