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Colleen 07-21-2015 03:21 PM

tumor markers
As a stage 4 HER2+ patient I regularly have my tumor marker test done. My marker is within range but has never gone to single digits, I am in the teens and 20s on the CA27.29. I had a complete pathological response to taxotere, Herceptin, and perjeta after 6 cycles and still receive HP every three weeks. No surgery or radiation though. Curious to know about others' tumor markers.

diagnosed: 11/04/2013 stage IV, 1.9 cm tumor in right breast, 7 nodes, and a 3.9 cm lesion on the liver
chemotherapy: 11/13/2013 begin 6 cycles taxotere, Herceptin, perjeta
01/28/2014 PET shows solid response to chemo
02/27/2014 last THP
03/20/2014 Herceptin and perjeta every three weeks until eternity
04/22/2014 PET complete pathological response to chemo, no surgery or radiation
06/02/2014 had my port removed! Couldn't stand it!
08/28/2014 PET still NED
02/04/2015 PET still NED
05/19/2015 brain MRI NED

thinkpositive 07-21-2015 04:03 PM

Re: tumor markers
I had my tumor markers tested when I was originally diagnosed in Aug 2013. My CA 27.29 was 38.8 normal should have under 38.6. So even though I had extensive cancer in my breast and nodes, I was only slightly higher than normal. I also had CEAB test which was 1.1. Normal should have been under 2.5 so I was within the normal range.

My onc hasn't tested my tumor markers since my original diagnosis. They don't seem very reliable in my case.

waterdreamer 07-21-2015 10:18 PM

Re: tumor markers
My CA 29-27 have always been normal. My CEA is currently 149 should be below 4, and my CA125 is 330+
We are all so different. Did you test positive for CEA or CA125 on your pathology report? If you did, they are probably good markers.

Colleen 07-22-2015 12:56 PM

Re: tumor markers
After reviewing my pathology report I do not see any CEA or other tumor type test outside of estrogen, progestin and HER2. Tumor markers were done with following blood work after biopsy. Sometimes I feel so "ignored" by my onc. She is highly recommended and regarded in the cancer community here but I have so many questions she has never answered.

Colleen 07-22-2015 01:06 PM

Re: tumor markers
There is a Ki-67: 20% (intermediate) not sure what that test truly indicates.

Jackie07 11-08-2015 02:24 PM

Re: tumor markers
Cancer Genomics Proteomics. 2015 11-12;12(6):385-390.
Proteomics as a Guide for Personalized Adjuvant Chemotherapy in Patients with Early Breast Cancer.
Lumachi F1, Chiara GB2, Foltran L3, Basso SM2.

Proteomics allows for better understanding of the function and regulation of cancer cells mediated by intra- and extracellular signaling networks. Integrating such information with clinicopathological characteristics of the tumor may lead to either detection of disease biomarkers useful to differentiate high-from low-risk patients, or to identification of new drug targets. Adjuvant chemotherapy is currently a personalized treatment strategy, especially for breast cancer (BC) patients, and the risk assessment of each patient influences its use because the benefit strictly correlates with the level of risk. Luminal A BCs are endocrine therapy (ET)-sensitive but exhibit low sensitivity to chemotherapy, while luminal B cancers, according to the Ki-67 proliferation rate may require for chemotherapy in addition to ET, and HER2-positive tumors derive benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy containing an anthracycline, a taxane and trastuzumab for one year. Triple-negative BCs have a high degree of genomic instability exhibiting a more aggressive clinical course with respect to other types of BC, and the anthracycline-taxane regimen constitutes the standard approach. Studies considering the use of targeted approaches (drugs), including poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP-1), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors, or EFGR and HER2 blockers, are still under evaluation. In the genomic era, promising new targeted-therapies are worthy of further investigation, and mTOR inhibitors have been used for patients with high-risk ER-positive and HER2-negative tumors. In the near future, genetic and molecular profiling of BC will help to better-categorize patients, determine the choice of chemotherapy in low-risk, or intensify the treatment in high-risk cancer patients, eventually revealing new targeted agents.

thinkpositive 11-08-2015 06:23 PM

Re: tumor markers
Wanted to update my previous response. My radiation onc recently ordered a ca27.29 test for me. It is currently 6.1. As stated previously, it was 38.8 before treatment. I guess this means that ca27.29 is a good test for me?

thinkpositive 11-08-2015 06:28 PM

Re: tumor markers
I see that you had a complete pathological response to treatment. I'm wondering what tissue was removed for the pathologists to determine you had a complete response? Did you have axilla dissection?

Colleen 11-08-2015 06:42 PM

Re: tumor markers
The only tissue collected was from my breast. My oncologist and surgeon relied on PET/CT scans, MRI, and another biopsy after the six cycles with taxotere were completed. We continue with PET/CT scans every six months, bloodwork every three weeks, physical exams every six weeks, and 3D mammograms yearly. Add to that the other medical specialists that I see on a regular basis. Sometimes I think my social calendar revolves around doctor appointments.

Colleen 11-08-2015 06:43 PM

Re: tumor markers
There was a second biopsy done after the six cycles of chemo along with all the other tests.

thinkpositive 11-14-2015 12:38 PM

Re: tumor markers
Thanks for answering my question regarding pathological complete response (PCR). I also had a PCR in my breast tissue and in the sentinel lymph nodes. It is good to know that so many of us have such a good response to treatment.

Take care,

senoraburt 04-08-2016 06:18 PM

Re: tumor markers
My oncologist never tells me what my tumor markers are because he says they can be unreliable. I really don't care I would rather know what they are. He can be evasive in responding to other questions as well. And, though I had the full regimen of docetaxol, carboplatin, Herceptin, and Perjeta, my large tumor only shrank by half and my very tiny tumor did not go away. I had neoadjuvant chemo followed by a mastectomy so that is why I know details of size of tumors after treatment. My cancer's response leaves be concerned.

Becky 04-09-2016 05:22 AM

Re: tumor markers
I have been NED almost 12 years and my 27/29 is always in the mid to high 20s. It was not done prior to treatment so I don't know if it's a good test for me.

Colleen 04-09-2016 06:51 AM

Re: tumor markers
My 27/29 tumor marker test was around 124 at dx, dropped to 54 at the end of my 6 cycles with THP, still on herceptin and perjeta and it hovers in the teens to low 20s. Stage IV at dx but have been NED for two years. Last 27/29 was done in March, it was 18. It's a good test but not a perfect indicator.

jaykay 04-09-2016 10:40 AM

Re: tumor markers
My CA 15-3 has always been between 14-22 (since March, 2000). Higher during chemo. However, on the day I was officially diagnosed with a new primary in the other breast (still doubting if it was a new primary;-), my CA 15-3 was 17.

I've asked my onc why she keeps prescribing this test since it is obviously not a good marker for me and haven't received a satisfactory answer yet. This is the only tumor marker test I've been given.


Colleen 04-09-2016 10:58 AM

Re: tumor markers
My onc says tumor marker blood tests of any kind are not a perfect indicator of cancer being present. I get the ca 27/29 every 9 weeks and scans every 6 months now. A good question to ask when I see her a week is: if the tumor marker test is not an ideal indicator why do we do them every nine weeks, what's the science behind it?

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