Usefulness of CA19-9 versus CA125 for the diagnosis of endometriosis

Fertil Steril. 2002 Oct;78(4):733-9. doi: 10.1016/s0015-0282(02)03328-9.


Objective: To investigate the clinical value of the serum CA19-9 level in comparison with the serum CA125 level for diagnosing and determining the severity of endometriosis.

Design: Retrospective study.

Setting: Department of Comprehensive Reproductive Medicine in a university hospital.

Patient(s): One hundred one women with endometriosis and 22 without endometriosis participated in this study.

Intervention(s): Blood samples were collected before the operation (laparoscopy, oophrectomy, cystectomy, and/or hysterectomy), and tissue samples of ovarian chocolate cysts were collected during the operation.

Main outcome measure(s): The serum CA19-9 and CA125 levels and the localization of these antigens in ovarian chocolate cysts.

Result(s): The mean serum CA19-9 levels in patients at all stages of endometriosis were significantly higher than those in patients without endometriosis, and serum CA19-9 levels significantly correlated with the Revised American Fertility Society classification scores. Intense staining of CA19-9 was observed in 15 of the 20 samples of ovarian chocolate cysts.

Conclusion(s): CA19-9 is a useful marker for determining the severity of endometriosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • CA-125 Antigen / analysis
  • CA-125 Antigen / blood*
  • CA-19-9 Antigen / analysis
  • CA-19-9 Antigen / blood*
  • Cystectomy
  • Endometriosis / blood
  • Endometriosis / diagnosis*
  • Endometriosis / surgery
  • Female
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect
  • Humans
  • Hysterectomy
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Laparoscopy
  • Middle Aged
  • Ovarian Cysts / chemistry
  • Ovariectomy
  • Regression Analysis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • CA-125 Antigen
  • CA-19-9 Antigen