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CA 125 Test - Cancer Antigen 125 Test

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Ca 125 Test Overview

CA 125 is a protein (cancer antigen 125) is  a protein expressed in coelomic epithelium that lines the body cavity.  Its concentration in blood increases in cancer of ovaries, some other cancers and certain benign conditions

The CA 125 serum test measures the level of a protein called CA 125 in the blood. This protein is found on the surface of some ovarian cancer cells. Its level in the blood can be used to help diagnose and monitor ovarian cancer.

It is also known as cancer antigen 125. It is present in small amounts in the blood of healthy women. When ovarian cancer is present, the level of CA 125 in the blood is usually higher than normal.

What is the CA 125 serum test?

The CA 125 serum test is a blood test. It measures the level of a protein called CA 125. This test is used to diagnose ovarian cancer, determine the stage of the disease, and monitor the response to treatment.

Written by: Dr Kavitha A, MBBS, MD Pathology

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CA 125 Test - Cancer Antigen 125 Test Price

Metropolis Healthcare is a leading diagnostics centre and pathology lab in India equipped with the latest state-of-the-art technologies that provides the CA 125 Test - Cancer Antigen 125 Test with a clear pricing structure.

The CA 125 Test - Cancer Antigen 125 Test Price in Mumbai is ₹ 1,500 .

We are committed to deliver accurate and quality results from the best labs in India with complete transparency regarding test cost and turnaround time. No matter where you are, we strive to offer patients high-quality service that is affordable and accessible.

Frequently Asked Questions

Ca 125 test is done to monitor patients of malignancy especially ovarian cancer.  
Serial monitoring of CA-125 is done to compare concentrations before and after treatment and also to establish a possible recurrence. Thus it can help assessing the effectiveness of treatment given.
This test is not a effective tool to diagnose cancer. In stage I of ovarian cancer many patients will have normal levels of CA-125

Ca 125 test measures the levels of CA125 antigen which is a tumor associated antigen. Levels increase in patients of ovarian cancer and certain other type of cancers

Ca 125 test requires a blood sample. A tourniquet (elastic) band is placed tightly on the upper arm. The patient is then asked to make a fist. This helps in the build-up of blood filling the veins. The skin is disinfected before needle insertion and the blood sample is collected in vacutainer.

The results of Ca 125 test when done over an interval help monitor condition of the patient and her response to treatment. Test results may be normal in patients with stage I of ovarian cancer.
CA-125 levels fall after successful treatment but continue to increase if their is progression and poor response to treatment
Levels may increase in certain non-cancerous conditions such as menstruation/ pregnancy/ uterine fibroids/ cirrhosis/ hepatitis/endometriosis/ PID
Patients should do a follow-up testing preferably through the same laboratory as different assays can give different result values on the same sample

CA 125 serum testing is most often recommended for women who are considered to be at high risk for ovarian cancer. These are mainly those with a family history of the disease. Additionally, women who have symptoms of ovarian cancer, such as abdominal pain or bloating, may also be advised to undergo CA 125 testing.

To perform the CA 125 serum test, a blood sample is taken from a vein in the arm. A vacutainer is used to collect the blood sample. The blood sample is then sent to a laboratory for analysis.

A positive CA 125 result may be due to ovarian cancer or one of many other conditions. A negative result usually rules out ovarian cancer. However, a small percentage of women with early-stage ovarian cancer will have a normal CA 125 level.

The CA 125 test is not perfect, however. In some cases, the test can produce false positive results (indicating cancer when there is none) or false negative results (indicating no cancer when there is). However, the CA 125 test is still useful in detecting ovarian cancer. It is recommended that women discuss this test with their doctor as part of their cancer screening plan.

A high level of CA 125 in the blood can be caused by several things. This includes ovarian cancer, endometriosis, and benign (non-cancerous) conditions. In addition, a small percentage of healthy women may have a high level of CA 125 in their blood for unknown reasons. So a high CA 125 level does not necessarily mean that a woman has ovarian cancer.


Certain non-cancerous reasons or conditions, including menstruation, pregnancy, uterine fibroids, cirrhosis, hepatitis, endometriosis, and PID, may cause levels to rise.

Patients should have follow-up testing, ideally at the same laboratory, as several assays can produce inconsistent results from the same sample.

However, the CA 125 test can help diagnose ovarian cancer, especially when it is used along with the observation by the experts and correlating with symptoms.

As with any test, there may be some risks involved.

The most common risk associated with the CA 125 serum test is false positive results. This means that the test may indicate that cancer is present when it is not. False positive results can occur for several reasons. These include the presence of other conditions that can cause an elevation in CA 125 levels (such as endometriosis or pelvic inflammatory disease).

Other risks associated with the CA 125 serum test include false negative results and complications from the blood draw. False-negative results can occur if the cancer is in its early stages and has not yet produced enough CA 125 to be detected by the test.

Units per millilitre (U/mL) are used to measure the amount of CA-125 in the body. The normal range is 0 to 35 U/mL. Levels of more than 35 U/mL may be a sign of cancer or other diseases.

You may have a condition that isn't carcinogenic if your CA 125 level is higher than predicted, or the test result could indicate that you have ovarian, endometrial, peritoneal, or fallopian tube cancer. To make a diagnosis, your doctor might suggest more examinations and treatments.

The most frequent causes of elevated CA-125, a blood protein linked to ovarian cancer, are common, ordinary, or benign illnesses such as uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, endometriosis, or even just getting your period.

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