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IHC - CA125

Immunohistochemistry (IHC) - CA125 is a diagnostic test that detects the presence of the CA125 protein in tissue samples. CA125 is a protein that is often found in higher levels in ovarian cancer cells, although it can also be elevated in other types of cancer and in various benign conditions.

In the realm of pathology, immunohistochemistry (IHC) is a crucial technique that involves the process of selectively identifying antigens (proteins) in cells of a tissue section. The method exploits the principle of antibodies binding specifically to antigens in biological tissues. In the case of CA125 IHC, it is the CA125 antigen that is detected.

  • Test NameIHC - CA125
  • Sample TypeTissue
  • Preparations RequiredNo special preparations are required.
  • Report Time3 days

What is the purpose of this test?

The IHC - CA125 test is used primarily to confirm a suspected diagnosis of ovarian cancer. It can also be helpful in identifying the source of cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

How is the test performed?

The test is performed on a sample of tissue, usually obtained through a biopsy. The sample is then treated with special stains that react with the CA125 protein if it is present.

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Reporting of the sample at lab
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Frequently Asked Questions

A positive result indicates that the CA125 protein is present in the sample. This is often, but not always, a sign of ovarian cancer.

No, this test is not recommended as a screening test for ovarian cancer because it can produce false positive results. It is best used to confirm a diagnosis in individuals who are already suspected to have the disease.

The risks and side effects are primarily related to the biopsy procedure used to obtain the tissue sample, and can include pain, bleeding, or infection at the site of the biopsy.

There are no specific preparations required for the test.

This test may be ordered along with other tests to evaluate a suspected or known cancer, such as other immunohistochemistry tests, blood tests, and imaging studies.

A negative result means that the CA125 protein was not detected in the sample. However, this does not definitively rule out the presence of cancer, as not all cancers produce this protein.

Yes, levels of CA125 can be elevated in various conditions other than cancer, including endometriosis, liver disease, and pelvic inflammatory disease.

The accuracy of the test is high for detecting the presence of the CA125 protein, but it is not always a reliable indicator of cancer, particularly in its early stages.

Yes, information from this test can help guide treatment decisions. For example, if the CA125 protein is present in a cancer that has spread, therapies that target this protein may be considered.

Yes, the test can be repeated over time to see if the levels of CA125 are decreasing, which could indicate that the cancer is responding to treatment.

High levels of CA125 in a person with ovarian cancer may be associated with a poorer prognosis, although many factors can affect an individual's outlook.

No, this test requires a tissue sample, which must be obtained in a healthcare setting.

If the results are unclear, the test may need to be repeated, or additional tests may be recommended.

Yes, while ovarian cancer is a female-specific cancer, the CA125 protein can also be found in other cancers, such as lung and pancreatic cancers that can affect both genders.

No, while a positive result is often associated with cancer, it's also possible for benign conditions to raise CA125 levels. These include menstruation, pregnancy, and pelvic inflammatory disease.

Results typically take 2-5 days but can vary based on the laboratory. Your healthcare provider can give you a more accurate estimate.

Yes, there are other tests used to diagnose and monitor ovarian cancer. These include blood tests for other markers such as HE4 and imaging studies such as ultrasound or CT scans.

The IHC - CA125 test is one piece of the diagnostic puzzle. Your doctor will likely use it in conjunction with other tests and procedures to make an accurate diagnosis.

Yes, while the IHC - CA125 test can be a valuable tool in the diagnosis of ovarian cancer, it has limitations. The test can yield false positives and false negatives, and it is not useful as a standalone screening test for ovarian cancer.

Yes, the IHC - CA125 test can be used to monitor disease progression in patients diagnosed with cancers that produce the CA125 protein. Regular testing can help track the effectiveness of treatment and detect potential recurrence.

While the IHC - CA125 test is generally reliable in detecting the CA125 protein, its interpretation in terms of diagnosing cancer should be combined with other diagnostic procedures and clinical information for accuracy.

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