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Multiple Myeloma: Prognosis and Treatments

Thursday, 03 April 2014 02:46 AM

Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer that affects white blood cells called plasma cells. In this type of cancer, cancer cells develop in the bone marrow. The bone marrow is where the stem cells make blood cells. Stem cells are immature cells that develop into blood cells. A number of antibodies of one type form due to the development of cancerous cells in the blood.
This leads to the development of symptoms of multiple myeloma — kidney damage, bone pain, and fractures due to bone damage. When the cancerous plasma blood cells fill up in the bone marrow, the creation of normal blood cells is not possible. Multiple myeloma can be treated using chemotherapy and other treatment options after identification through blood tests and other diagnostic methods.
According to Cancer.org, studies show the prognosis of Stage 1 of the cancer has a median survival rate of 62 months. Stage 2 of this type of blood cancer has a prognosis of a median survival rate of 44 months. The prognosis of Stage 3 of the cancer has a median survival rate of 29 months. These survival rates are for patients first treated five to 25 years ago. Prognosis of the cancer varies from case to case. Various factors are responsible for cancer prognosis, so consulting your doctor can provide a more accurate prognosis based on blood and other diagnostic tests.  
There are actually no treatments to cure multiple myeloma. However, treatments are available that can help in reducing the symptoms associated with multiple myeloma. If patients do not experience any symptoms, treatments may not be required. If patients are suffering from symptoms associated with multiple myeloma, treatments can help. Good treatments help patients to lead normal lives with a better prognosis.
  • Chemotherapy: It is among the helpful treatments. It uses anticancer drugs effective in killing cancer cells. These chemotherapy drugs are available as injections or tablets.
  • Radiotherapy: One of the treatments useful for multiple myeloma patients is radiotherapy. It uses high energy radiation beams that are focused on cancerous tissues. These treatments are effective in killing cancerous cells and stopping them from multiplying.
  • Stem cell transplant: It is one of the beneficial treatments for multiple myeloma patients. This is considered one of the best treatments to provide complete remission.
  • Other treatments: Some other treatments can be used to reduce symptoms associated with multiple myeloma. These include painkillers, antibiotics, kidney dialysis, surgery, and blood transfusion.

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Multiple myeloma is a cancer affecting plasma cells. Plasma cells are a type of white blood cells. Prognosis of multiple myeloma varies from case to case. Treatments are available that are effective in reducing and controlling the symptoms though a complete cure is not possible.
Thursday, 03 April 2014 02:46 AM
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