Evaluation of preoperative predictive values of serum CA15-3 and CEA within Sudanese women with breast cancer.

  • HG Ahmed
  • MOM Hussein


Objectives: Early detection of cancer comprises early diagnosis in symptomatic and screening of asymptomatic individuals. Our aim was to evaluate the significant values of carbohydrate antigen 15-3 (CA15-3) and/or Carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) in women with breast cancer.

Design and setting: This case control study was conducted in Khartoum Teaching Hospital, Khartoum, Sudan.
Application of such measurement may be helpful within screening and early detection efforts in such a country like Sudan with poor resources.

Methods: We examined by serological radioimmuno-assay methods, significant elevation of CA15-3 and CEA serum samples obtained from 100 women of whom 40% and 35% were patients with histopathologically confirmed breast cancer and benign breast lumps respectively and the
remaining 25% were apparently healthy controls. Statistical analysis: Data were analyzed by using a computer SPSS program.

Results: Among the 75 patients with breast lumps, 33 (44%) and 31(37.3%) showed high CA15-3 and CEA levels respectively. Of the 40 carcinomas, high expressions of CA15-3 and CEA were found among 28(70%) and 24(60%) respectively. Notably, only 2(8%) of the controls showed lightly elevated CEA.

Conclusions: The obtained Specificity of 85.7%, 80% and sensitivity of 70%, 60% for CA15-3 and CEA correspondingly, support the combined application of both markers in screening for breast cancer.

Key words: Carcinoembryonic antigen, radioimmuno-assay, breast lump, histopathologically


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eISSN: 1858-5051