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AFP, no other indicators?

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  • AFP, no other indicators?

    Hi Y'all,

    Went in today for vasectomy consult with a new urologist since I moved out of state.

    The new urologist is concerned with my past AFP levels I had done due to a epidydimal cyst.

    Over a 6 month period the AFP levels were 10.2, 11.2, and 9.9. This new urologist wants to start AFP testing again.

    Should I go thru this again or just ask for an ultrasound? I've had several clear US's to include a clear CT scan. Am I just worrying about a number?

    Note: I have IBS from military, use a multi vitamin, l lysine supplement, and now a medical cannabis patient.


  • #2

    Many TC experts aren't concerned with AFP until it reached 25.

    For sure, you should do monthly testis exam. I am not convinced in the value of ultrasound for my part because of your stable AFP.

    December 15, 2015 : Right I/O. Markers normal.
    December 24, 2015 : Merry Christmas ! 100 % pure EC, no LVI.
    January 7, 2016 : CT scan : 2 RPLN of 8 and 9 mm
    February 2016 : Markers normal.
    March 2016 : Markers normal.
    April 2016 : Abnormal B-HCG (43). 14 mm (from 8) and 10 mm (from 9) lymph nodes.
    April 25, 2016 : Happy birthday ! Relapsed confirmed.
    May 2, 2016 : BEP x 3 begins.
    July 3, 2016 : BEP x 3 ends.
    July 2016 : Serum tumor markers normal. 10 mm (from 14) and 6 mm (from 10) lymph nodes. Back on surveillance !
    December 23, 2016 : Merry Christmas ! Serum tumor markers normal. 6.8 mm (from 10) and no more visible (from 6) lymph nodes. Surveillance continues.
    June 2017 : Serum tumor markers normal. 4 mm (from 7 mm) lymph node. Surveillance continues.


    • #3
      Here is what the Testicular Cancer Resource Center dictionary ( says about AFP:[

      Alpha-fetoprotein - AFP is a protein found in the bloodstream of some men with nonseminomatous testicular cancer (It is NEVER present in seminoma patients). The level rises when the cancer is growing and falls when the cancer is shrinking or has been surgically removed, so a blood test can possibly measure the progress of the disease and success of treatment. Because of this behavior, it is referred to as a tumor marker. Elevated levels of AFP occur in 75 per cent of patients with teratocarcinoma, embryonal cell carcinoma, and yolk sac carcinoma. (However, increased levels of AFP are also found in patients with liver diseases, such as cirrhosis, acute and chronic hepatitis and hepatic necrosis. ) The serum half life of AFP is 5 to 7 days, which implies that elevated levels of AFP should fall by one half of the initial level per week and should probably return to normal within 25 to 35 days after surgery if all of the tumor has been removed. The higher the level, though, the longer it will take to return to normal. Please note that AFP is normally less than about 5 ng/ml, but cancer cannot be assumed until it is over 25 ng/ml. Also note that a very small number of people have a naturally high level of this protein in their blood (though less than 25) even though they do not have cancer.
      It looks lie your numbers are quite low & pretty stable further testing won't hurt, but I suspect it will confirm you are one of those with a naturally higher level.

      Jan, 1975: Right I/O, followed by RPLND
      Dec, 2009: Left I/O, followed by 3xBEP


      • #4
        You could also point your physician to this piece by Dr. Einhorn and se wha they think. (See Pitfalls)

        I would not be overly concerned where you current AFP level are and plus, they seem stable.

        Oct. 2005 felt lump but waited over 7 months.
        06.15.06 "You have Cancer"
        06.26.06 Left I/O
        06.29.06 Personal Cancer Diagnosis Date: Got my own pathology report from medical records.
        06.30.06 It's Official - Stage I Seminoma
        Founded the Testicular Cancer Society
        6.29.13 Summited Mt. Kilimanjaro for 7th Cancerversary