MULTIPLE MYELOMA KNOWLEDGE CENTER

Get the Facts

Find what you need to know
in our brochures.

DOWNLOAD

Speak to an MMRF
nurse specialist

An MMRF nurse specialist can
guide you through your multiple
myeloma journey every step of the
way. Call Monday-Friday, 9-7 ET.

CALL NOW

Peripheral Neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy is a condition affecting the nerves that causes pain, tingling, burning sensations, and numbness in the hands and feet. Proteasome inhibitors (particularly Velcade) and an older IMiD, Thalomid, have been associated with the development of peripheral neuropathy. Other conditions, such as diabetes, can also cause neuropathy. The presence of existing neuropathy is a consideration in the selection of which myeloma therapy is given, and depending upon its severity, myeloma medications that do not have this side effect may be selected. Other conditions, such as diabetes, can also cause neuropathy.

The presence of existing neuropathy is a consideration in the selection of which myeloma therapy is given, and depending upon its severity, myeloma medications that do not have this side effect may be selected.
Patients taking Kyprolis, a newer proteasome inhibitor, are significantly less likely to develop neuropathy, and if it occurs, it is typically mild. The way Velcade is given affects the risk of development of neuropathy as well as its severity. Today, Velcade is most often given as an injection under the skin (subcutaneous), which reduces the chance of developing neuropathy. If given intravenously, once-weekly is less likely to result in neuropathy as compared to twice-weekly.

In contrast to Thalomid, peripheral neuropathy is uncommon with the newer IMiDs (Revlimid and Pomalyst) that are more commonly used. However, the newer IMiDs can exacerbate neuropathy that existed prior to myeloma treatment. Changes in dose are the main way peripheral neuropathy is managed in patients taking Velcade. If peripheral neuropathy is severe, doctors will tell patients to stop taking Velcade, and another medication will be prescribed. Peripheral neuropathy usually improves or resolves after the treatment dose is reduced or treatment is stopped.