Serum tumor markers in patients with metastatic germ cell tumors of the testis. A 10-year experience
Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
The serum values of alphafetoprotein, human chorionic gonadotropin, lactate dehydrogenase, and carcinoembryonic antigen in patients with metastatic testicular cancer were reviewed for the period 1972 to 1982. All values were obtained before chemotherapy was begun. Elevated values of alphafetoprotein were present in 47 percent of patients tested, of human chorionic gonadotropin in 60 percent, of lactate dehydrogenase in 64 percent, and of carcinoembryonic antigen in 11 percent. The frequency of elevated values of alphafetoprotein, human chorionic gonadotropin, and lactate dehydrogenase decreased during the study period. Inverse relations between elevated values of alphafetoprotein, human chorionic gonadotropin, and lactate dehydrogenase and both complete remission rate and survival rate were noted in some of the chemotherapy trials. Carcinoembryonic antigen was believed not to be useful as a marker in this disease. It is concluded that assays of alphafetoprotein, human chorionic gonadotropin, and lactate dehydrogenase are important both clinically and prognostically in patients with testicular cancer.