Spike in CEA marker after chemo

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Deborah J.
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2017 3:39 pm

Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby Deborah J. » Fri Feb 24, 2017 3:49 pm

I finished a year of FULFOX (3 days/week every other week) in April. My most recent blood test shows a CEA marker THREEtimes higher than my last score. Did anyone else experience a spike post treatment?

Lee
Posts: 6025
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2006 4:09 pm

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby Lee » Sun Feb 26, 2017 6:19 pm

I had an increase while on FOLFOX that went down after finishing chemo. From what I understand, CEA picks up a protein that the cancer cell emit, This can happen when those cancer cells are dying off. Or when the tumor is growing.

Did you have your testing done at the same lab?

Have you talked to your Onc yet?

I would ask for a repeat of test in about 2 weeks.

Hope this helps some, all the best.

Lee
rectal cancer - April 2004
46 yrs old at diagnoses
stage III C - 6/13 lymph positive
radiation - 6 weeks
surgery - August 2004/hernia repair 2014
permanent colostomy
chemo - FOLFOX
NED - 10 years and counting!

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muskokamike
Posts: 225
Joined: Tue Feb 25, 2014 4:38 pm

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby muskokamike » Sun Feb 26, 2017 6:35 pm

Deborah

What was your baseline CEA level at dx?
What is the normal range for your lab?

If normal is 0-4 like my lab and your CEA has gone from .06 - 1.8 (3X) that is still within normal range and onc's are concerned over the trend after several tests.
If your CEA has jumped from 3-9(3X) they may do further testing if the onc thinks it is warranted.

Too many sleepless nights on this forum over CEA levels, myself included. Some onc's don't even test CEA because of the anxiety it can cause.
53M Dx rc10/31/13
WTF!
CT scan, BONE scan
MRI/T3N0M0 1 suspicious node
5 wks chemo/rad
LAR open TME 2/26/14
temp ileo
0/24 nodes pCR/pathological
Mop up Folfox (8) Mar/28-Jul/4
Aug/14 clear CT scan
8/27/14 reversal
Feb/15 clear scope
July/15 clear CT scan
Feb/16 clear CT scan
Feb/17 clear CT scan
Feb/18 clear scope
Feb/18 clear CT scan
Sep/19 clear CT scan DISCHARGED!
CEA levels 1.6 dx
1.6,1.4,1.7,2.4,2.9, 2.7 2.3 2.5 2.2 2.1 2.5 2.6 2.7
2.7 Sept 19
0-4 normal
https://kicknasscancersass.blogspot.com/

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CRguy
Posts: 10110
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 6:00 pm

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby CRguy » Sun Feb 26, 2017 9:01 pm

CEA can be a very good marker ... for some folks with some tumors.
CEA can be false positive for a LOTTA reasons which have been enumerated here many times = basically ANY inflammation in the body .. especially thoracic.
CEA can / will increase after tumors get nuked with treatments.
CEA is useless for many folks = ME ! ... so I have alternate markers done as well, 'cos Oncs STILL luvs their CEAs !
CEA trends are often considered more informative than single lab values .. in the absence of OTHER corroborating information.

Most follow up protocols would require a repeat in about 4 weeks or so to validate the initial result.
Most Oncs would then consider alternate markers and/or imagings to SEE what is going on in the PATIENT
... not just in the lab tests, IF the result is still elevated.

Increase from April 2016 to Feb 2017 is not likely due to treatments ... SO you should push your Oncs to get to the bottom of this
.... BUTT please remember that the winter sees a lotta flu/coughs/colds etc. ... AND thoracic causes of any inflammation are probably the Numero UNO reason for false CEA elevations.

You can worry until the retest OR continue to live your life.
Either way you cannot change what is on the test result ... only waste your time worrying :shock:

The main point is that if the docs need to be concerned, then they have their marching orders for you and they NEED to follow up, which they will.

One day
one step at a time

it is all we sometimes have control over
HOW we deal with WHAT we need to deal with

Harmony on the Journey
CRguy
Caregiver x 4
Stage IV A rectal cancer/lung met
13 Year survivor
my life is an ongoing totally randomized UNcontrolled experiment with N=1 !
Review of my Journey so far

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HopeForJesse
Posts: 249
Joined: Wed Feb 24, 2016 9:39 am
Location: Philadelphia

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby HopeForJesse » Sun Feb 26, 2017 9:58 pm

Thank you for this question and these answers. Very helpful for peace of mind here.
DH DX 01/16 49 YO inop RC stage IV liver mets
MSS TP53 APC,BRCA2
12/15 CEA 241, FOLFOX to 11/16
LAR/ileo 5/16 Clear margins 1/29 nodes
HAI, reversal, liver resections7/16
FUDR 8/16 -NED 3 mos
Rising CEA 3/17 Xeloda, 5/17 -12/17 Erbitux & Iri stable but lung/lymph mets CEA 2.7
5/18 5 days SBRT radiation to sternum 10/22/18 surgery to remove zyphoid process met
6/11/19 5FU added to cetuximab and irinotecan CEA 16
Ephesians 3:20 Our God is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine!

mariane
Posts: 676
Joined: Sun Sep 13, 2015 6:16 pm

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby mariane » Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:40 pm

Teeth may be one of the factors.

My CEA went suddenly 0.6 down after doing 2 root canals and starting Aspirin and Turmeric. I do not know whether it is coincidence , unexplainable fluctuation or real trend after ceasing inflammation due to neglected during chemo teeth.
This little crazy marker gives us so much stress. I hold my breath during loging in to MSKCC and local oncologist's networks.

Good luck!
mom of now 10 years old twins, dx @ 40 in 6/2015 with upper rectal cancer, 10+ liver mets, CEA 140
chemo: 8/2015 - 10/2016 - 4xFOLFIRINOX, 2xFOLFOX, 8xFOLFIRI, 10x5FU, HAI pump -12xFUDR
4 surgeries, complete pathological response
CEA<2 since 10/2015
NED since May 2016

I praise God for every day with my family!

Amanda and Matthew
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:32 am

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby Amanda and Matthew » Fri May 12, 2017 1:16 am

Hi, new here. I am a caregiver.

Gosh, long story short, my husband was diagnosed with colorectal cancer at 37 years of age, on the 10th of March 2017. Colonoscopy, biopsy, CT revealing spots on the liver (thought to be cysts) obstruction and then stent (cancelling MRI, so spots on Liver TBD), pneumonia and pleural effusion and collapsed lung due to abscess behind the spleen (but only discovered after resection). Resection 12 days after pneumonia with one functioning lung. Foot and a half of large ascending colon removed and an 8cm tumor. Spleen removed and discovery of abscess. Some abdominal wall removed. Marked for radiation. One months recovery, not without a wound infection and wound pump to heal another abscess below wound.

Had an MRI 4 days ago. Revealed multiple mets on liver. Gone from stage 3B to stage 4. Started chemo three days ago. Oxaliplaten bag and then 14 days oral Pecaset (like Xeloda). PET scan scheduled for the 31st May 2017.

Matthews doesn't have CEA markers. Which is extremely unhelpful. We are beside ourselves with worry, but are forging forward. At the moment, the liver is not resectionable. There are two larger tumors on both left and right sides as well as many small tumors in between. Hoping chemo does its job.

Any hope and advice welcome. We are South Africa.

Lee
Posts: 6025
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2006 4:09 pm

Re: Spike in CEA marker after chemo

Postby Lee » Fri May 12, 2017 7:35 pm

Amanda and Matthew wrote:Hi, new here. I am a caregiver.

Gosh, long story short, my husband was diagnosed with colorectal cancer at 37 years of age, on the 10th of March 2017. Colonoscopy, biopsy, CT revealing spots on the liver (thought to be cysts) obstruction and then stent (cancelling MRI, so spots on Liver TBD), pneumonia and pleural effusion and collapsed lung due to abscess behind the spleen (but only discovered after resection). Resection 12 days after pneumonia with one functioning lung. Foot and a half of large ascending colon removed and an 8cm tumor. Spleen removed and discovery of abscess. Some abdominal wall removed. Marked for radiation. One months recovery, not without a wound infection and wound pump to heal another abscess below wound.

Had an MRI 4 days ago. Revealed multiple mets on liver. Gone from stage 3B to stage 4. Started chemo three days ago. Oxaliplaten bag and then 14 days oral Pecaset (like Xeloda). PET scan scheduled for the 31st May 2017.

Matthews doesn't have CEA markers. Which is extremely unhelpful. We are beside ourselves with worry, but are forging forward. At the moment, the liver is not resectionable. There are two larger tumors on both left and right sides as well as many small tumors in between. Hoping chemo does its job.

Any hope and advice welcome. We are South Africa.


Hi Amanda and welcome,

I'm going to recommend you take all this information you posted above and start your own new thread. You can title it "Newbie here. Husband diagnosed, looking for help." Or how ever you want to title it.

Where in South America are you? Is there any chance you could come to the USA. There's a wonderful hospital in New York city that's done life saving surgery on the liver for people that have been told, nothing more can be done. Butt you really want to start your own thread with new eyes looking at it.

You will find a lot of support and information here, know that you are not alone,

Lee
rectal cancer - April 2004
46 yrs old at diagnoses
stage III C - 6/13 lymph positive
radiation - 6 weeks
surgery - August 2004/hernia repair 2014
permanent colostomy
chemo - FOLFOX
NED - 10 years and counting!


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