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  • Blood tests to determine Cancer

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    Old 10-20-2008, 08:13 AM   #1
    Hope74
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    Blood tests to determine Cancer

    Hi there

    I'm new here (34 year old male) and wondered if anyone could help me understand some blood work I've just had done.

    To cut a long story short - for the past two months I've been having various non specific symptoms that were assumed by my doctor to be IBS

    These were

    Abdominal pain - all over really, centrally around my belly button, but also right up by my rib cage and also to the left and right hand side of my stomach.

    Back pain - up by my shoulder blades but also down by my spine

    Constipation

    Loss of apetite


    I'm not a Hypochondriac - I never go to the doctors and it was only after 4 weeks of the symptoms that I visited the doctor. However, I did read about a guy my age who had similar symptoms that went undiagnosed and it turned out he had Pancreatic Cancer. I told my Dr about this and he was understanding and said if I wanted to have some blood tests done to see if that shed any light I could do. I had ESR, CRP and 2 others which I forget and they all came back normal. He said therefore I had nothing to worry about.

    Now I know there isn't a blood test that can point to any specific type of cancer - i.e Pancreatic versus Stomach cancer, or Bowel cancer etc. But is the Doctor right when he says that if I had any sort of cancer at all something would have shown up in the blood tests?

    Thanks for any help you can give me

    Hope74

     
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    Old 10-20-2008, 08:08 PM   #2
    Mel52
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    Hi Hope, I think I would ask to go see a gasterentrologost. It could be IBS but I think the doctors are quick to label things. I would think an ultrasound or a MRI would be the next step. If only blood work did show everything but it doesn't. It could also be your gallbladder. An ultrasound would indicate gallstones but a HIDA scan would tell you how your gallbladder is working if there aren't any gallstones. If your doctor won't do anything more get another doctor.

     
    Old 10-21-2008, 03:32 AM   #3
    Hope74
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    Hi Mel

    Thanks very much for your reply - I'm having an ultrasound tomnorrow so hopefully that will shed some light on things.

    As regards to the blood work - I said to the doctor that I didn't think there was a test that could determine cancer and he said that whilst that is true, if I did have some kind of cancer there was a 90% certainty that something would show up in the ESR and CRP test (even though it would of course not tell us which type of cancer or where) Is this logic completely flawed then do you (or anyone) think?

    Thanks again for your reply.

     
    Old 10-21-2008, 07:12 PM   #4
    Mel52
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    hmm I don't know the answer to that one. I would think then drs would be doing more blood work on people. Hopefully someone passing by these boards can answer that question. Good luck with the ultrasound let us know

     
    Old 11-07-2008, 12:09 PM   #5
    Laura B
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    I'm wondering about the same thing. If a blood test shows cancer, wouldn't it be simple to detect cancer? I completed my chemo treatment in August but I still have to see my oncologist next month. I assume she will take blood tests, she did lots of them during chemo treatment. I will ask her what the blood test is for!
    Laura

     
    Old 11-07-2008, 12:40 PM   #6
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    I would suggest you have a CT scan on your upper and lower ab. Ultrasound cannot find small solid mass. However, your symptoms are not necessary a sure indicator of cancer. They could be caused by other desease.

     
    Old 12-18-2008, 04:53 AM   #7
    rossy77
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    Hello Hope74
    Did you find out what was wrong ?


    thanks

     
    Old 03-12-2009, 12:07 PM   #8
    fufu
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    a blood test does not detect cancers. you had several blood tests during chemo because chemo kills the bad cells in your body but it also kills the good, that is why you always needed blood tests to see where your cell counts were before they proceeded with the nest treatment. when you're doing chemo your white cells go down drastically and sometimes they have to wait for your counts to go back up before they administer the next treatment. your oncologist will probably take a blood test to see if everything is ok and again depending on what cancer you had. if a patient has leukemia for example it would probably show a really high white blood count, though again it would have to be confirmed by many other tests, most likely bone marrow transplant.
    BLOOD TESTS DO NOT CONFIRM CANCER.
    if only it were that simple!

     
    Old 03-15-2009, 02:22 PM   #9
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    Re: Blood tests to determine Cancer

    Usually a high ESR will detect an infection somewhere in your body. That would trigger a Doctor to look further. If all came back negative the Doctor wouldnt be over worried. Maybe you could ask him for a scan for a second opinion, that way you will feel sure they have looked into your stomach and that will put your mind at ease. It could be IBS, but the scan would determine any real abnormalities.

     
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