Cancer and Tumor Marker Women's Screening

Early detection of cancer is vital. Learn all about tumor marker women's screening blood tests and the importance of taking a blood test for cancer in women.  Find the right blood test for cancer for women online with Ulta Lab Tests, and get affordable, accurate blood work with confidential results in 24 to 48 hours, so order today!

According to the American Cancer Society, the most common cancers women face are:

  • Breast cancer
  • Colorectal cancer 
  • Lung cancer 
  • Cervical cancer
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Endometrial cancer 
  • Skin cancers 
SEE BELOW THE LIST OF TESTS FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT – Women's Cancer and Tumor Marker Screening Blood Tests

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This assay is intended for use in the assessment of risk for the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in patients with chronic liver disease.

The major sources of amylase are the pancreas and the salivary glands. The most common cause of elevation of serum amylase is inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis). In acute pancreatitis, serum amylase begins to rise within 6-24 hours, remains elevated for a few days and returns to normal in 3-7 days. Other causes of elevated serum amylase are inflammation of salivary glands (mumps), biliary tract disease and bowel obstruction. Elevated serum amylase can also be seen with drugs (e.g., morphine) which constrict the pancreatic duct sphincter preventing excretion of amylase into the intestine.

This test detects 3 mutations which account for approximately 90% of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations found in Ashkenazi Jews.

This test detects mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes which are the most common causes of hereditary breast and ovarian cancers.

This test detects large deletion/duplication mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes which are not detectable by DNA sequencing

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The CA 125 level can provide prognostic information in the follow-up management of patients with ovarian carcinoma. The assay should be used as an adjunctive test in the management of ovarian cancer patients. CA 125 is not recommended as a cancer screening procedure to detect cancer in the general population

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CA 15-3 may be useful for monitoring patients with metastatic breast cancer and certain ovarian cancers. The CA 15-3 values from sequential samples have a high correlation with the clinical course in most patients with metastatic breast cancer.

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A large percentage of patients with gastrointestinal tumors (such as pancreatic, liver, gastric, colorectal tumors) and some other malignancies have been shown to have elevated serum CA 19-9 levels. Serum CA 19-9 levels may be useful for monitoring disease activity or predicting relapse following treatment. CA 19-9 should not be used as a screening test.

CA 27.29 may be useful for monitoring patients for metastatic breast cancer.

Calcitonin concentration is increased in patients with medullary thyroid carcinoma. Calcitonin concentrations may be used to monitor disease.

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Increased serum CEA levels have been detected in persons with primary colorectal cancer and in patients with other malignancies involving the gastrointestinal tract, breast, lung, ovarian, prostatic, liver and pancreatic cancers. Elevated serum CEA levels have also been detected in patients with nonmalignant disease, especially patients who are older or who are smokers. CEA levels are not useful in screening the general population for undetected cancers. However, CEA levels provide important information about patient prognosis, recurrence of tumors after surgical removal, and effectiveness of therapy.

A Complete Blood Count (CBC) Panel is used as a screening test for various disease states including anemia, leukemia and inflammatory processes.

A CBC blood test includes the following biomarkers: WBC, RBC, Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, MCV, MCH, MCHC, RDW, Platelet count, Neutrophils, Lymphs, Monocytes, Eos, Basos, Neutrophils (Absolute), Lymphs (Absolute), Monocytes(Absolute), Eos (Absolute), Basos (Absolute), Immature Granulocytes, Immature Grans (Abs)

NOTE: Only measurable biomarkers will be reported.

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The DCP assay is intended for in vitro diagnostic use as an aid in the risk assessment of patients with chronic liver disease for progression to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in conjunction with other laboratory findings and clinical assessment.

The fecal occult blood test is an immunochromatographic fecal occult blood test that qualitatively detects human hemoglobin from blood in fecal samples. This is a useful screening aid for detecting primarily lower gastrointestinal (G.I.) disorders that may be related to iron deficiency anemia, diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis, polyps, adenomas, colorectal cancers or other G.I. lesions that can bleed. It is recommended for use by health professionals as part of routine physical examinations and in screening for colorectal cancer or other sources of lower G.I. bleeding.

For the diagnosis and monitoring of gastrin-secreting tumors, gastric ulcer, Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Increased in pernicious anemia.

hCG may reach detectable limits within 7-10 days of conception. hCG is produced by the placenta and reaches a peak between the 7th and 10th week of gestation. hCG is a glycoprotein hormone produced by the syncytiotrophoblast of the placenta and secreted during normal pregnancy and with pathologic conditions such as hydatidiform mole, choriocarcinoma and testicular neoplasm. Order hCG, Total, Qualitative, Urine, if hCG serum result is inconsistent with clinical presentation.

Lactate Dehydrogenase (LD) (LDH)

Elevations in serum lactate dehydrogenase occur from myocardial infarction, liver disease, pernicious and megaloblastic anemia, pulmonary emboli, malignancies, and muscular dystrophy

Protein electrophoresis is a test that measures specific proteins in the blood. The test separates proteins in the blood based on their electrical charge. The protein electrophoresis test is often used to find abnormal substances called M proteins.

Measurement of thyroglobulin antibodies is useful in the diagnosis and management of a variety of thyroid disorders including Hashimoto's thyroiditis, Graves Disease and certain types of goiter.

Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies (TPO) and Thyroglobulin Antibodies

Measurement of thyroglobulin antibodies and thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPO) is useful in the diagnosis and management of a variety of thyroid disorders including autoimmune thyroiditis, Hashimoto's Disease, Graves Disease and certain types of goiter.

 "IMPORTANT - Please note that Quest returns values up to 900 for the Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies test.  If tracking requires values above 900 for the Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies, then order test TPO Antibody Endpoint (Test Code # 15116).

According to the CDC, cancer is the second leading cause of death of women in the United States, right behind heart disease. There are many preventative measures against cancer, including blood tests for each type of cancer that women face.

In this guide, we'll go over the different types of women's cancers, the signs and symptoms, and the tests you can get to screen for and monitor cancer in women. Read on to learn more about how to protect yourself or a loved one from different types of cancer in women.

What Are the Different Types of Cancer in Women?

According to the American Cancer Society, the most common cancers women face are:

  • Breast cancer
  • Colorectal cancer 
  • Lung cancer 
  • Cervical cancer
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Endometrial cancer 
  • Skin cancers 

There are different recommendations about when and how often you should get tested based on age groups and other risk factors.

What are the Benefits of Getting Tested for Cancer in Women?

Women between 40 and 55 should get screened for breast cancer with a mammogram every year. You should also check yourself for any lumps, skin discoloration, or unusual pain in your breasts every month. Women over 21 should get a regular Pap smear test done by their gynecologist every three years to test for some kinds of cervical cancers and HPV. 

These tests mentioned above, along with tumor marker blood tests for ovarian, endometrial, and other types of cervical cancers, can help you catch cancer in its early stages. Catching cancer early on can lead to a greater chance of survival. Talk to your doctor if you have any symptoms or risk factors for these kinds of cancer, and consider ordering a blood test to screen yourself if you think you may have cancer.

Causes and Risk Factors for Cancer in Women

While the causes for most types of cancer are unknown, there are a few risk factors that could increase your likelihood of getting cancer. Most types of women's cancers have a higher risk associated with age and genetic factors. Smoking and obesity are also risk factors for all kinds of cancer.

You are at an increased risk for cervical cancer if you have been exposed to or diagnosed with HPV. There is an HPV vaccine recommended for children and young adults to prevent HPV infection and cervical cancer.

Some types of ovarian and endometrial cancer have an increased risk if you have never had children or had your first child after 30. Hormone replacement therapy can affect the hormone levels in your body and may be another potential risk factor.

Signs and Symptoms of Cancer in Women

Some symptoms and warning signs of breast cancer include:

  • nipple discharge or changes
  • swollen breasts
  • lumps in breast, armpits, or collarbone
  • breast or nipple pain
  • skin discoloration or dimpling

The following signs can apply to ovarian cancer, cervical cancer, or endometrial cancer:

  • spotting between periods or smelly discharge
  • bloating or swelling in the belly
  • belly, back, or pelvic pain or discomfort
  • bowel changes such as diarrhea or constipation
  • frequent urge to pee, or unexplained weight loss without dieting

If you have any of these warning signs, you should consider getting yourself tested and talking to your doctor for more information.

One frequently asked question is, what are some signs and symptoms of cancer in women? Other kinds of cancers than those mentioned here often have similar symptoms for men and women. But women can often mistake serious abdominal pain for regular PMS symptoms or period cramps, so it's important to get that checked by a doctor if it persists beyond a few days.

How is Women's Cancer Diagnosed?

Along with regular mammograms, colonoscopies, and Pap smear tests during your regular check-ups, your doctor may order blood tests to determine if you have cancer. Different kinds of tests can screen and diagnose cancer and monitor the condition during cancer treatment.

What Does Each Blood Test For Cancer in Women Test For?

BRCA 1 and 2 tests are genetic tests using your DNA. This test looks for changes or mutations in the BRCA 1 and 2 genes that show an increased hereditary likelihood for breast and ovarian cancers. This is a screening test for patients who may have a higher risk of developing these kinds of cancer.

Cervical cancer tests use genetic markers to help determine your risk for developing cervical cancer. This test looks for extra copies of a certain gene associated with this type of cancer.

The CA 125 tumor marker test for ovarian cancer monitors patients who already have ovarian cancer. This test looks for the tumor marker CA 125 in the blood that is usually elevated in women with ovarian cancer. This marker can be high in women who are not sick or not present in women who have cancer, so it is best used as a monitoring test or in conjunction with other tests for a diagnosis.

The He4 ovarian cancer monitoring test is also used to monitor an existing diagnosis of ovarian cancer. This test looks for a different kind of tumor marker and tends to be a more accurate indicator than the CA 125 test for some kinds of ovarian cancer. Imaging tests like an ultrasound or CT scan might be necessary along with these tests for a doctor to confirm a diagnosis of ovarian cancer.

Benefits of Ordering Your Cancer Lab Tests Online

You can order blood tests online to help screen for women’s cancers. When you order your tests online with Ulta Lab Tests, you get fast, secure, and confidential results within 24-48 hours for most tests.

You won't need health insurance or a referral from a doctor to order the tests, and you can get them at an affordable price. Choose the tests you want to order and go to a lab near you for a phlebotomist to collect the samples.

Take Charge of Your Health

Kick cancer to the curb with blood tests for cancer in women from Ulta Lab Tests. You can take charge of your health by ordering the tests you need directly without waiting for a doctor's approval. Check out our list of blood tests for cancer, or search for a specific test to get started on your path to wellness today.