Treatment naive multiple myeloma

Treatment Naive Multiple Myeloma: What to Expect

Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer that affects the plasma cells, a kind of white blood cell. People with multiple myeloma have a large number of abnormal plasma cells (known as myeloma cells) in their bone marrow, which disrupts the production and function of normal, healthy blood cells. When someone is newly diagnosed with multiple myeloma, they may be considered “treatment naive,” meaning they have not yet received any treatment. Understanding what to expect from treatment can be an important part of helping to manage the disease and its symptoms.

Treatment-naive multiple myeloma is usually diagnosed with an imaging study that measures bone marrow and shows a large number of abnormal plasma cells. In some cases, a blood test may be done to measure the levels of immunoglobulins in the blood, which is typically elevated in people with multiple myeloma. After diagnosis, the patient and doctor will work together to develop a treatment plan. Treatment can vary depending on the individual and their specific needs, but is typically a combination of chemotherapy and immune therapies such as monoclonal antibodies.

Treatment Goals for Treatment Naive Multiple Myeloma

The primary goal of treatment for treatment-naive multiple myeloma is to reduce the number of abnormal plasma cells in the bone marrow. Depending on the specific circumstances, treatment may also include radiation therapy to reduce bone pain, or stem cell transplantation to help restore normal blood cell production. In some cases, surgery may be done to remove a single mass of cancerous plasma cells.

Most people with treatment-naive multiple myeloma will need to be monitored closely for any signs and symptoms of the disease. These may include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Bone pain or tenderness
  • Anemia (low red blood cell count)
  • Fatigue
  • Elevated calcium levels in the blood
  • Frequent infections

It's important to understand that treatment for treatment-naive multiple myeloma is tailored to each individual and may be adjusted as needed. Some people may require more aggressive treatment, while others may benefit from a more conservative approach. Working closely with your healthcare team can help ensure that you receive the most effective and appropriate treatment for your condition.