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Freaking out... should I be? Tumor marker results.

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  • Freaking out... should I be? Tumor marker results.

    Before my orchiectomy on June 18, I had a bHCG of 452. 11 days post surgery, bHCG went down to 7. On July 12, bHCG was less than 1. Only July 15th, I elected to have a single dose of Carboplatin. I just got my results from my Sept 7th blood test. bHCG is now at 2. I understand this is within the normal range (lab is less than 5), but I'm extremely concerned about the result.

    I have a phone call with my oncologist this afternoon. Not sure what he will say. Any words of wisdom from those of you that have been through this before? Should I insist on another blood test or a scan?

    I should add - I was diagnosed with Pure Seminoma
    6/4/18 BHCG 452, AFP 1
    6/13/18 CT Scan, no involvement beyond left testicle
    6/18/18 Radical Left inguinal orchiectomy, Pathology pure seminoma, rete testis obliterated
    6/29/18 BHCG 7, AFP 1.5 (calc 1.8 half-life)
    7/12/18 BHCG<1, AFP 1.5, LDH 220, Diagnosed as Stage 1b, T3N0
    7/25/18 Adjuvant Chemotherapy, 780mg Carboplatin
    8/27/18 Chest CT Scan clear
    9/7/18 BHCG<2, AFP 2.0, LDH 182 (Different lab w/diff ranges than initial tests)
    9/26/18 MRI to review liver cysts for possible metastasis, all clear. No lymphadenopathy
    11/19/18 Next blood test
    11/23/18 Next CT Scan
    11/30/18 follow up with oncologist

  • #2
    1 and 2 doesn’t seem concerning. I feel your doctor would say the same.
    3/29/17 Diagnosed 100% Embryonal 4/10/17 Left I/O CT scan shows a few suspicious lymph (biggest 1.9 cm) 5/8/17 - 7/3/17 3xBEP 7/20/17 CT Scan Clear, AFP has uptick to 19 8/16/17 AFP Drops in half to 10, ALL CLEAR! 9/12/18 All clears up to here!

    Comment


    • #3
      Your lab bouncing between 1 and 2 is perfectly normal. I wouldn't worry a bit about it.
      6/5/15: bHCG 27,AFP 8.66, LDH 361, 5.6cm lymph node - Stage IIC
      6/16/15: Left I/O 85% EC, 10% chorio, 5% yolk sac opinion 2 (mayo) 90% EC, 10% yolk sac
      7/7/15: bHCG 56, AFP 42, LDH 322
      7/13/15 - 9/18/15: 4xEP
      10/1/15: bloodwork normal, ct scan shows 2 lymph nodes 1.0cm
      10/26/15: 2nd opinion on CT results - lymph nodes normal. Surveillance!
      4/6/16: 1.7cm X 1.5cm lymph node found with markers normal.
      4/20/16: RPLND @ IU - teratoma only!
      9/27/2018 all clears up to this date!

      Comment


      • #4
        I just got a call back from my doctor... he said anything in the normal range (0-5 for this lab, my other lab was 0-6) is a great result. He told me I should go drink a beer to celebrate. That put it all in perspective for me.

        Thank you biwi and dcalandrelli for your wisdom. Your posts help to relieve my anxiety while I was waiting for the call back.

        6/4/18 BHCG 452, AFP 1
        6/13/18 CT Scan, no involvement beyond left testicle
        6/18/18 Radical Left inguinal orchiectomy, Pathology pure seminoma, rete testis obliterated
        6/29/18 BHCG 7, AFP 1.5 (calc 1.8 half-life)
        7/12/18 BHCG<1, AFP 1.5, LDH 220, Diagnosed as Stage 1b, T3N0
        7/25/18 Adjuvant Chemotherapy, 780mg Carboplatin
        8/27/18 Chest CT Scan clear
        9/7/18 BHCG<2, AFP 2.0, LDH 182 (Different lab w/diff ranges than initial tests)
        9/26/18 MRI to review liver cysts for possible metastasis, all clear. No lymphadenopathy
        11/19/18 Next blood test
        11/23/18 Next CT Scan
        11/30/18 follow up with oncologist

        Comment


        • #5
          As mentioned and confirmed by your doctor, such a small increase is really of no concern but more importantly, congrats on the good call and enjoy that beer.

          Mike
          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
          Surveillance...
          Founded the Testicular Cancer Society
          6.29.13 Summited Mt. Kilimanjaro for 7th Cancerversary

          For some reason I do not get notices of private messages on here so please feel free to email me directly at mike@tc-cancer.com if you would like to chat privately so as to avoid any delays.

          Comment


          • #6
            I'm drinking a beer right now. To be fair, it was before reading this post, but i'll take a swig in cheers for you too haha.
            6/5/15: bHCG 27,AFP 8.66, LDH 361, 5.6cm lymph node - Stage IIC
            6/16/15: Left I/O 85% EC, 10% chorio, 5% yolk sac opinion 2 (mayo) 90% EC, 10% yolk sac
            7/7/15: bHCG 56, AFP 42, LDH 322
            7/13/15 - 9/18/15: 4xEP
            10/1/15: bloodwork normal, ct scan shows 2 lymph nodes 1.0cm
            10/26/15: 2nd opinion on CT results - lymph nodes normal. Surveillance!
            4/6/16: 1.7cm X 1.5cm lymph node found with markers normal.
            4/20/16: RPLND @ IU - teratoma only!
            9/27/2018 all clears up to this date!

            Comment


            • #7
              The whole reason there is a "normal range" is because the numbers change a bit from test to test. Even a test result a few points above the normal range is often not reason for concern, but would warrant a quicker re-test to see if a trend is starting.
              .
              .Dave
              Jan, 1975: Right I/O, followed by RPLND
              Dec, 2009: Left I/O, followed by 3xBEP

              Comment


              • #8
                I just got a hard copy of the test results. The result is actually "<2", Now I'm even more not concerned. There is also a note that the test equipment changed, and is listed as a "Siemen's Vista". All good... just interesting.

                Thanks all for helping me settle my nerves! It's going to be a great weekend!!
                6/4/18 BHCG 452, AFP 1
                6/13/18 CT Scan, no involvement beyond left testicle
                6/18/18 Radical Left inguinal orchiectomy, Pathology pure seminoma, rete testis obliterated
                6/29/18 BHCG 7, AFP 1.5 (calc 1.8 half-life)
                7/12/18 BHCG<1, AFP 1.5, LDH 220, Diagnosed as Stage 1b, T3N0
                7/25/18 Adjuvant Chemotherapy, 780mg Carboplatin
                8/27/18 Chest CT Scan clear
                9/7/18 BHCG<2, AFP 2.0, LDH 182 (Different lab w/diff ranges than initial tests)
                9/26/18 MRI to review liver cysts for possible metastasis, all clear. No lymphadenopathy
                11/19/18 Next blood test
                11/23/18 Next CT Scan
                11/30/18 follow up with oncologist

                Comment

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