Dr. Kumar on Defining Multiple Myeloma

Shaji K. Kumar, MD
Published: Monday, Oct 12, 2015



Shaji Kumar, MD, professor of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, gives an overview on the expanded definition of multiple myeloma.

Multiple myeloma that requires treatment, Kumar explains, is when organ damage such as high calcium, bone disease, anemia, and/or kidney issues occur. However, the definition of multiple myeloma has been expanded to include biomarkers that predict for development of these characteristics. It has also been expanded to include patients who have more than 60% of plasma cells in their bone marrow, have a free light chain ratio of more than 100, or have one or more lesions found on MRI or PET scans.

Researchers have determined that among patients who harbor one of these characteristics, the risk of having symptomatic or active multiple myeloma in 2 years is over 80%. Thus, it may be more beneficial to treat these patients earlier, Kumar says.
 


Shaji Kumar, MD, professor of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, gives an overview on the expanded definition of multiple myeloma.

Multiple myeloma that requires treatment, Kumar explains, is when organ damage such as high calcium, bone disease, anemia, and/or kidney issues occur. However, the definition of multiple myeloma has been expanded to include biomarkers that predict for development of these characteristics. It has also been expanded to include patients who have more than 60% of plasma cells in their bone marrow, have a free light chain ratio of more than 100, or have one or more lesions found on MRI or PET scans.

Researchers have determined that among patients who harbor one of these characteristics, the risk of having symptomatic or active multiple myeloma in 2 years is over 80%. Thus, it may be more beneficial to treat these patients earlier, Kumar says.
 



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