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Information About Multiple Myeloma

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  Multiple Myeloma

Multiple Myeloma is a type of cancer formed by malignant plasma cells . The plasma cells are a type of white blood cell present in bone marrow. At present, the cause of Multiple Myeloma is not known. Multiple Myeloma is part of a spectrum of diseases labeled Plasma Cell Dyscrasia. Plasma cells are the cells responsible for forming antibodies used by the body’s immune system against bacteria and foreign proteins. For reasons that are unclear, these plasma cells lose their ability to respond to signals put of by immune cells. Plasma cells will then start to divide and form abnormal proteins, resulting in damage to the bone, the bone marrow, and other organs (such as the kidneys). The disease is called Multiple Myeloma because abnormal myeloma cells can occur in multiple bone marrow sites in the body.

Sometimes, before Multiple Myeloma develops, it is preceded by another condition of excessive plasma cell growth. This condition is called monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance. In this disease abnormal plasma cells produce excess amounts of antibody protein. However, these plasma cells do not form an actual tumor or mass and do not cause any symptoms. In fact, the disease rarely affects a person's health. It is discovered because of high levels of protein in the blood and then further testing shows the protein is immunoglobulin. In time, many people with monoclonal gammopathy eventually develop one of the following diseases:

  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Lymphoma
  • Amyloidosis
Consult with a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment of Multiple Myeloma
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