Factors Influencing Serum Concentration of CA125 and CA15-3 in Iranian Healthy Postmenopausal Women

Alamtaj Samsami DEHAGHANI1, Alireza Fotouhi GHIAM2, Marjan HOSSEINI1, Sareh MANSOURI1, Abbas GHADERI2

1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
2Institute for Cancer Research, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
3Department of Immunology, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran


Screening for breast and ovarian cancers are required due to the late stage at diagnosis and poor survival. Serum CA125 and CA15-3 are important cancerdetecting agents in patients with ovarian and breast cancers, respectively. Elevation of CA125 and CA15-3 level correlates with malignant and non-malignant conditions. Moreover, a series of individual characteristics affect the serum level of these markers. The objective of the present study was to evaluate CA125 and CA15-3 levels in cancer-free postmenopausal women to investigate the impacts of patient parameters on the serum level of these markers. 203 subjects were studied prospectively. Serum CA125 and CA15-3 assessment was done subsequent to the direct interview. The associations between marker levels and presenting features were examined. CA125 and CA15-3 levels were elevated in 35 (17.2%) and 12 (5.9%) of persons, respectively. A higher CA125 level was associated with advanced age (p = 0.046), while a lower level was correlated with hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and having smoking habits (p = 0.000 and p = 0.01, respectively). CA15-3 level was remarkably lower amongst oral contraceptive (OCP) users (p = 0.03). Serum marker levels were not significantly related to menarche age, age at menopause, height, weight, BMI and parity. Serum CA125 is imperative indicator for malignancies of the ovary; however, personal and medical factors influence its serum level. A fair interpretation of results must be due to an accurate attention to the individual characteristics. Pathology & Oncology Research, Vol 13, Nr 4, 360-364, 2007

Key words: breast health; menopause; cancer

Received: Jan 2, 2007; accepted: Oct 13, 2007
Correspondence: Abbas GHADERI, Institute for Cancer Research, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz , Iran; Tel: (+) 98 711 230 3687, Fax: (+) 98 711 230 4952; E-mail:

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