- Slideshow: A Visual Guide to Understanding Cancer
- Patient Comments: Multiple Myeloma - Symptoms
- Patient Comments: Multiple Myeloma - Prognosis
- Patient Comments: Multiple Myeloma - Diagnosis
- Patient Comments: Multiple Myeloma - Treatment
- Patient Comments: Multiple Myeloma - Follow-up care
- Find a local Oncologist in your town
- Multiple myeloma facts
- What is multiple myeloma?
- What causes multiple myeloma?
- What are risk factors for multiple myeloma?
- What are multiple myeloma symptoms and signs?
- How do health-care professionals diagnose multiple myeloma?
- What are the stages of multiple myeloma?
- What is the treatment for multiple myeloma?
- What types of specialists treat multiple myeloma?
- What is the prognosis for multiple myeloma?
- What support systems are available for multiple myeloma?
Quick GuideUnderstanding Cancer: Metastasis, Stages of Cancer, and More
What types of specialists treat multiple myeloma?
Although the patient's primary-care doctor helps to manage the patient's care, the specialists involved often include an oncologist, hematology pathologist, radiologist, stem cell transplant specialist, and occasionally a surgeon (orthopedist and/or spine surgeon).
What is the prognosis for multiple myeloma?
The prognosis of multiple myeloma is variable, depending on the approximate stage and response to therapy. Though there is no cure for the disease, today's treatments are more effective and less toxic (have fewer side effects) than did many in the past. Life expectancy or survival ranges from about one to 10 years, with median survival of about three years with the five-year relative survival rate of 46.6%. Survival is higher in young people and lower in the elderly. Complications include early death due to infections (meningitis, septicemia, pneumonia), anemia, kidney failure, and a depressed immune system. Currently, multiple myeloma is considered to be a disease that is not preventable. Multiple myeloma is not a hereditary disease. Multiple myeloma is a focus of active ongoing research.
What support systems are available for multiple myeloma?
The International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) can provide caregivers and patients information about many aspects of this disease. IMF's phone number is 1-800-452-2873. There are local, state, and national support groups for multiple myeloma.
"Multiple Myeloma." American Cancer Society. 12 Feb 2013.
"Multiple Myeloma Support Groups." The Myeloma Beacon.
"NCCN Guidelines." National Comprehensive Cancer Network.
Fanning, Suzanne R., et al. "Monoclonal gammopathies of uncertain origin." Medscape. 12 Jun 2013.
Shah, Dhaval. "Multiple Myeloma." Medscape.com. Feb. 5, 2016. <http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/204369-overview>.