Methods. Serum expression of the tumor marker CA 19-9 was studied in 2119 patients. Results. The discriminating capacity between benign and malignant disease was high for CA 19-9, especially in patients with pancreatic cancer (n = 347). The sensitivity of CA 19-9 was 85%. In patients who were Lewis blood type positive, the sensitivity increased to 92%. CA 19- 9 levels were significantly lower in patients with resectable tumors (n = 126) than in those with unresectable tumors (n = 221, p < 0.0001) (sensitivity 74 vs 90%). CA 19-9 dropped sharply after resection, but normalized only in 29, 13, and 10% in patients with stage I, II, and III, respectively. In unresectable tumors no significant decrease of CA 19-9 after laparotomy or bypass operation was found. In patients of the same tumor stage, the median survival time in those whose CA 19-9 levels returned to normal after resection was significantly longer than in those with postoperative CA 19-9 levels that decreased, but did not return to normal (in stage I, 33 vs 11.3 mo, in stage II, 41 vs 8.6 mo, and in stage III, 28 vs 10.8 mo). In patients with recurrent disease, 88% had an obvious rise in CA 19-9 levels.
- CA 19-9
- Pancreatic cancer
- diagnostic and prognostic values
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