Forum Diagnosticum No.05/2013

Biomarkers for Early Detection of Ovarian Cancer

Early detection of ovarian cancer remains a major challenge in the field of gynecology because this disease is almost asymptomatic at the early stages and hides in the pelvic cavity. Serum tumor markers measurement is an interesting alternative because it is non-invasive, even though there is no single specific tumor marker for all types of ovarian cancer. Score calculation with some multivariate markers such as OVA 1 and ROMA is a better alternative because they can produce a higher diagnostic accuracy than CA 125 alone. Several new tumor markers which are useful as a complement to CA 125 are HE4, B7-H4, transthyretin and apolipoprotein A1. Because of the low prevalence of ovarian cancer, the use of tumor markers as a screening test for the general public is not currently recommended because it is still waiting for the results of the ongoing prospective study. Examination of tumor markers is more advisable to differentiate adnexal masses, therapy monitoring and the detection of recurrence.


Author: Andi Darma Putra (Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Indonesia-RSCM)

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