Carcinoma of the unknown primary site is a metastatic carcinoma, in which the primary site of the tumour could not be determined. Carcinoma of the unknown primary site is usually found in the lymph node, liver, bone and the lung. Sometimes, there is a widespread metastatic disease without a known primary site. Estimation of tumour markers is of great significance in the carcinoma of unknown primary site to determine the probable site of primary cancer. An elevated level of plasma Alpha Feto Protein (AFP) indicates the presence of carcinoma of the liver, stomach, pancreas, lung and the ovary. Carcino-Embryonic Antigen (CEA) is a tumour marker of cancers of the colon, liver, stomach, pancreas, cervix, bladder, kidney, thyroid and the ovary. Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) and Prostatic Acid Phosphatase (PAP) are tumour markers of carcinoma of the prostate. CA 125 is a tumour marker of ovarian cancer. CA 19-9 is a tumour marker of the colorectal and the pancreatic cancers. CA 72-4 is a tumour marker of stomach cancer. CA 15-3 is a tumour marker of breast cancer. CA 27-29 is a tumour marker of breast cancer.
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Carcinoma of Unknown Primary Site (CUPS)