Don’t request the determination of serum biomarkers like CEA, CA-125, HE4, CA-15.3, -fetoprotein or CA-19.9 for the diagnosis of neoplastic disease in asymptomatic patients.

Type of practice

Laboratory tests

The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of these biomarkers are not sufficient to allow their use (diagnosis, screening, case-finding) in a population with a low prevalence of neoplastic diseases. Their use is recommended for the monitoring of the neoplasms that express the specific biomarker (Colon – rectal: CEA; Ovarian: CA-125 and / or HE4; Breast cancer: CA-15.3; Hepatocarcinoma: -fetoprotein; Pancreatic: CA-19.9).



1. Sturgeon CM, Diamandis EP. Use of tumor markers in clinical practice: quality requirements. Disponibile alla pagina: [citato 26 aprile 2023].
2. Gion M, Trevisiol C, Fabricio AS. Appropriateness of tumor marker request: a case of study. Ann Transl Med 2017;5:274. doi: 10.21037/atm.2017.0.
3. Gion M, Treisiol C, Rainato al. Marcatori circolanti in oncologia Guida all’uso clinico appropriato. Quaderni di Monitor 2016. Disponibile alla pagina: [citato 26 aprile 2023].



Attention. Please note that these items are provided only for information and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a clinician. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their clinician.