Multiple myeloma is a lethal form of cancer that attacks the bone marrow, primarily the plasma cells.
This cancer is classified as a blood cancer (haematological malignancy) because it develops in the bone marrow, which is where blood cells are produced.
The activity of multiple myeloma is such that when plasma cells become cancerous, there is an uncontrolled production of abnormal proteins which leads to the development of brain tumours within the bone marrow and other parts of the body.
As a result of tumour development, the individual or host experiences pain, fatigue, weakness and fractures in the body.
Multiple myeloma is most common in adults in their mid-60s. Its activity is intense such that it can lead to organ damage over time.
Causes of Multiple Myeloma
The factors that predispose individuals to this cancer might include but are not limited to:
- Family history of the disease.
- Chemical exposure.
- Immune system deficiency.
Symptoms of Multiple Myeloma
- Abnormal protein production.
- A feeling of numbness and weakness in the legs.
- Kidney dysfunction.
- Recurrent infections are caused by an imbalance in the immune system.
Treatment of Multiple Myeloma
- Chemotherapy: This involves inhibiting the activity of the cancer cells with drugs. This therapy not only alters the development of cancer but further prevents replication.
- Bone marrow transplant: This describes the removal of damaged stem cells from the patient’s blood, treatment of it with chemotherapy to kill cancer cells and the transfer of healthy stem cells to aid the production of healthy blood cells.
- Immunotherapy: This works by activating the immune system with drugs to identify and effectively fight against cancer cells as they develop.
Multiple myeloma is a potentially life-threatening cancer but early detection and identification of symptoms can help to enhance recovery.l It is however important and advised to seek medical assistance if an individual develops any symptoms of this cancer.