The aim of this study was to measure serum concentrations of human epididymis protein 4 (HE4) in premenopausal and postmenopausal women with benign adnexal tumors and compare HE4 levels with those of cancer antigen 125 (CA125) measured in the same samples.
In a retrospectively designed, monocentric study (Department of Gynecology & Obstetrics, General Hospital, Celje, Slovenia, EU), 147 women diagnosed with various benign adnexal tumors were included. Preoperative HE4 and CA125 levels were obtained and analyzed with regard to histopathological classification, menopausal status, and age distribution.
A marked difference was observed in patients with endometriomas in which mean CA125 was elevated above the reference range in the premenopausal (mean 90.1 U/ml) and postmenopausal groups (mean 48.5 U/ml), while HE4 levels were within the reference range, irrespective of age or menopausal status. Inflammatory adnexal tumors were associated with elevated levels of CA125 (mean 142.2 U/ml, premenopausal and mean 62.4 U/ml, postmenopausal patients); HE4 levels were not elevated regardless of age or menopausal status.
HE4 is elevated less frequently than CA125 in benign adnexal tumors, regardless of age or menopausal status.