Multiple Myeloma

December 22 21:21 2019 Print This Article

Multiple Myeloma is part of a spectrum of diseases labeled Plasma Cell Dyscrasia. It is a type of cancer of plasma cells, immune system cells in bone marrow that produce antibodies. The immune system has several types of cells that work together to fight infection and disease. While a myeloma diagnosis can be overwhelming, it is important to remember that there are several promising new therapies that are helping patients live longer, healthier lives. Multiple myeloma also known as MM, myeloma, plasma cell myeloma, or as Kahler’s disease after Otto Kahler.

Plasma cells are a type of white blood cell present in your bone marrow – the soft, blood-producing tissue that fills in the center of most of your bones. Each year, about 15,000 Americans learn they have multiple myeloma. Scientists are studying this disease to find out more about how it develops. An intriguing feature of this disease is that the antibody-forming cells (ie, plasma cells) are malignant and, therefore, may cause unusual manifestations.

To understand multiple myeloma, it is helpful to know about normal blood cells. The disease is called multiple myeloma because myeloma cells can occur in multiple bone marrow sites in your body. This section is designed to serve as a fundamental resource for education about multiple myeloma. It is a debilitating malignancy that is part of a spectrum of diseases ranging from monoclonal gammopathy of unknown significance (MGUS) to plasma cell leukemia.

The growth of the tumor, which takes place in the bone marrow, its protein products and the individual response to the disorder will result in all of the organics disfunctions seen in this disease. The disease also interferes with the function of your bone marrow and immune system, which can lead to anemia and infection. Many people feel understandably shocked and upset when they are told they have multiple myeloma. Chemotherapy with melphalan-prednisone is the standard treatment for multiple myeloma.

Causes of Multiple Myeloma

The comman causes of Multiple Myeloma include the following:

  • Multiple myeloma is characterized by the excessive growth and malfunction of plasma cells in the bone marrow.
  • The Mayo clinic found disease in 8 siblings out of 440 patients; these 8 siblings had different heavy chains but the same light chains.
  • Risk factors include certain kinds of behavior such as cigarette smoking for lung cancer, inherited (genetic) traits, and exposure to cancer-causing agents in the environment.
  • Radiation has been linked to the development of myeloma.
  • Obesity.
  • Working in the petrol, rubber or leather industries.
  • It appears that patients who have been involved in the agricultural, chemical, or radiology industries are at higher risk of developing the disease.

Symptoms of Multiple Myeloma

Some sign and symptoms related to Multiple Myeloma are as follows:

  • One of the most common symptoms, however, is bone pain.
  • Bleeding problems.
  • Unexplained fractures.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Symptoms of anemia (such as tiredness, shortness of breath, and fatigue)
  • Numbness.
  • Headache.
  • Back pain (lower back pain more common)
  • Fractures. Because the bones are so weak they may fracture or break very easily, often for no apparent reason.
  • Feeling thirsty.
  • Frequent urination.

Treatment of Multiple Myeloma

Here is list of the methods for treating Multiple Myeloma:

  • Chemotherapy is the most common treatment for myeloma.
  • A person may want to consult with more than one specialist before selecting the hematologist-oncologist.
  • Induction – focuses on reducing the amount of disease and achieving remission
  • Radiotherapy aims to damage the abnormal cells and stop their growth with radiation from X-rays. This treatment is very important.
  • Biological therapy (using the body’s immune system to fight cancer).
  • Stem cell (bone marrow) transplantation.