Blood Tests for Cancer

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Blood Tests for Cancer

Whilst there is no single test for every type of cancer, scientists have identified various substances produced in the body that have been named “tumour markers”. Most tumour markers are produced by normal cells as well as cancerous cells, but may be produced by cancerous cells in higher amounts. These substances are usually proteins and are not only found in the blood, but also in urine, stool and body tissue of patients with cancer.

After discussing your symptoms and conducting an examination, your doctor may recommend screening for tumour markers. Do not worry about determining for yourself which if any blood test you need. This is something that your doctor will be able to determine and explain during your consultation.

All our blood tests are available same day with some of the fastest results in London. One of our doctors will take the time to explain to you what your test results mean and put in place any appropriate next steps based on those results.

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How it Works

1. BOOK AN APPOINTMENT

Choose from any of our 7 London blood test clinics, open 7 days

2. MEET WITH A DOCTOR

They can advise on suitable tests and take a blood or urine sample

3. RECEIVE YOUR RESULTS

You will be emailed your results, analysis and recommendations

4. FOLLOW UP (OPTIONAL)

Follow up consultation only £25 for further treatment or advice

Cancer & Related Tests

Test Cost Results
DocTap Over 40s Male Screen £107 1 working day

HAEMATOLOGY

FBC with 5-part Diff

BIOCHEMISTRY

Urea and Electrolytes
Sodium, Potassium, Chloride, Bicarbonate, Urea, Creatinine, eGFR

Liver Function Tests
Bilirubin, Alk Phos, AST, ALT, Gamma GT, Total Protein, Albumin, Globulin

Lipid Profile
Triglycerides, Cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, LDL Cholesterol, non-HDL Cholesterol

Glycosylated Haemoglobin

TUMOUR MARKERS

Prostate Specific Antigen (Total)

Alpha Feto Protein £56 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
Beta HCG (Quantitative) £46 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
CA 125 £109 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
CA 15-3 £109 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
CA 19-9 £109 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
CA 50 £133 5 working days
Calprotectin £86 5 working days
Carcino Embryonic Antigen £72 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
Complex PSA (Prostate Specific Ag) £72 3 working days
Prostate Specific Antigen (Total)* £65 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
Squamous Cell Carcinoma £176 4 working days
Testicular Tumour Profile £114 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)
Well Man Profile plus HDL Cholesterol, LDL Cholesterol and Non-HDL Cholesterol £160 Same day (if by 1pm Mon-Fri)

As DL7 plus plus HDL Cholesterol, LDL Cholesterol and Non-HDL Cholesterol

This is only a small sample of the many blood tests which DocTap provide. Our expert doctors can advise you during your consultation on the most appropriate tests for your condition. View all blood tests.

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Why Choose DocTap?

DocTap seek to provide the most convenient, fastest, effective and best value private blood testing service in London. With 12 blood test centres across London and same day appointments available 7 days a week, it has never been easier to book a cancer test. We are proud to partner with The Doctors Laboratory (TDL) which has a worldwide reputation for excellence.

Unlike many blood test clinics, you will see a UK accredited GP who will be able to offer their expert option on what test is most appropriate for you. Your results will also be accompanied by a written analysis of what they mean and what your doctor advises you to do next. Should additional treatment be required, or if you simply wish to discuss the results in more detail, then you can book a 15 minute follow up consultation for only £25. This can either be at any DocTap clinic or over the phone. When booking your follow up consultation you can request to see you original doctor if you wish (subject to their availability).

Should you require a full consulation before deciding to have a cancer test then there may be insufficient time to also take a blood sample in the appointment. In that case you can choose to either go to our walk in laboratory by Oxford Street (£15 phlebotomy fee applies) or to make a second appointment for the doctor to take the bloods.

cancer test london
Advice from expert UK doctors
12 London clinics, open 7 days
Blood tests & screens from £14
Fast results, many same day
Includes doctor's report and plan
Follow up with GP (£25, optional)
World class partner lab (TDL)
No sales incentives for doctors

Types of Tests for Cancer

There have been many different tumour markers identified, some which are associated with one type of cancer, others with several. For example:

  • Ca 125 blood test - ovarian cancer.
  • Ca 19-9 blood test - pancreatic cancer, gallbladder cancer, bile duct cancer, gastric cancer
  • AFP blood test - alphafetoprotein - liver cancer and germ cell tumours
  • CEA blood test - carcinoembryonic antigen - colorectal cancer
  • PSPA blood test - prostate specific antigen - prostate cancer

What cancers can we diagnose?

Unfortunately it is not as easy as taking a single blood test for cancer and diagnosing or ruling out a cancer. If it was there would be mass population screening. For one of these tumour marker tests to be useful on its own for diagnosis of cancer it would have to have a very high sensitivity (correctly identifying the people with cancer) and very high specificity (correctly identifying the people that do not have cancer). In other words, getting a positive test result would need to mean that the chance of having cancer would be very high, and getting a negative result would need to mean that the chance of having cancer would be very low. Unfortunately for all the tumour markers identified to date this is not the case, so for these tests, we are not there yet.

There are occasions when a doctor will want to test a tumour marker as part of their diagnostic investigations. Often doctors will use more definitive tests (eg scans or endoscopy) if they need to rule out cancer. 

However, many of them are useful after a diagnosis of cancer to track the progress of the cancer in response to different treatments. 

Should all men have a PSA test done?

The PSA (prostate specific antigen) test has the same limitations of other cancer markers. While testing all men would detect cancer in many older men, it isn't clear how many of them needed to know. This is because many men will die of something else having never needed to know that they had prostate cancer. Unfortunately we cant tell which of the men with prostate cancer need treatment and which can ignore it. As a result, men with prostate cancer will often have surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy which can cause significant life-long side effects. While for some men this will have been life saving, for many others they will suffer harm from treatment which they never needed to have. This is a complex issue and if you are thinking about this test then please speak with a doctor to find out more. 

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