Multiple myeloma is the second most common blood cancer. The disease starts in the plasma cells in bone marrow. When the plasma cells become malignant, they create a defective protein that can grow out of control and crowd out the normal cells that help fight infection and disease. When the bad protein cells move into bone, they cause tumors. If the malignant cells form a tumor, it is called myeloma. If multiple tumors are formed, the disease is called multiple myeloma. In the past, there was little hope for those with this disease, but the MMRF has helped introduce six new drugs. Through the power of new technology, genomics, immunology and the development of new treatments, lives are now being saved.
There are often no symptoms in the early stages of myeloma. When present, symptoms may be vague and similar to those of other conditions.
Learn what to look for.
To date, no cause for myeloma has been identified. While research suggests possible associations with certain conditions, most cases of multiple myeloma develop in individuals who have no known risk factors.LEARN MORE
Having all the appropriate diagnostic tests done is very important, as the results will help your doctor better determine treatment options and a prognosis. Many of these tests are also used to assess the extent of the disease and to plan and monitor treatment.LEARN MORE