For baseline and observation — to assess tumor burden and monitor levels of tumor and indicate a recurrence; prognosis (what treatment to use if the tumor should recur); most tumor markers are NOT specific, meaning that positive result does not necessarily mean that the primary site can be readily identified.
Acid phos, acid f, acid p'tase. A test of blood serum to detect a specific enzyme produced by several tissues, particularly the prostate. Acid phosphatase levels are elevated in 85% of cases with skeletal metastases, 60% of untreated cases, and 20% of localized cases. Usually ordered as a separate laboratory test. May also be ordered as prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP), a measure of acid phosphatase secreted by prostate gland cells specifically. Note:test results may be affected by recent prostatic massage or palpation; acid phosphatase level should be assayed before digital rectal examination. Normal range: varies according to method of processing the serum:
ACTH (Adrenocorticotropic Hormone)
Elevated level found in paraneoplastic syndrome caused by small cell carcinoma. Non-diagnostic of lung cancer, but an indicator of metastases.
Alk phos, alk f, ALP. May be included in blood chemistry screening panel. Normal range: 20-90 I.U./liter. Normal range may vary somewhat according to the brand of laboratory assay materials used.
A serum test used as a tumor marker for hepatocellular cancer. Elevated alpha-fetoprotein levels are also found in certain ovarian and teratocarcinoma or embryonal carcinoma of the testis. Elevated alpha-fetoprotein levels are not found in other histologies of testicular cancer. Note: Observe the date of an alpha-fetoprotein study carefully. Record a pre-operative study only. Alpha-fetoprotein is also used as a marker postoperatively to monitor residual tumor. Also called: FP, AFP, alpha-fetoglobulin. Normal range: Adults: < 15 ng/ml
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• Source: 'Health In Ur Hands' by Dr.Devendra Vora,D.Sc.,M.D.,F.R.C.P., an octogenarian & the pioneer in Acupressure in India.