Smart Reviews

Multiple Myeloma Treatments and Breakthroughs

There continue to be many new innovative and effective treatments and breakthroughs for patients that are suffering from multiple myeloma, cancer that occurs in malignant plasma cells. In an exciting development, recent research has revealed that when malignant growth occurs there are effective ways to block them from spreading. These multiple myeloma treatments and breakthroughs are providing a lot of hope for the future in patients that are currently suffering from this disease. Bone marrow support tissues are being prevented from breaking down with medications that are the result of innovations due to this research.

Another perhaps surprising treatment innovation for multiple myeloma is the use of arsenic, otherwise known as rat poison. This substance is currently used in the treatment of leukemia and is now being tested for further use in the treatment of myeloma. Panobinostat is another recent treatment drug that is being rolled out in the use to fight myeloma. This drug is a histone deacetylase (HDAC) that effectively effects the proteins in chromosomes. This drug is often used in combination with bortezomib and dexamethasone for maximum effectiveness. While panobinostat is a new addition to the duo of bortezomib and dexamethasone, it is now approved for full use in the treatment of myeloma.

One breakthrough that remains in the testing and verification process is a process entitled gene expression profiling. This procedure looks to identify the cancerous cells as well as their location. The procedure will eventually be able to alert a patient’s medical team as to the most optimum time for them to undergo chemotherapy in the treatment of their myeloma. This process is still in the testing phase and is expected to continue to yield positive results. After this phase is complete, it is likely that gene expression profiling will be used widely in the testing of myeloma cancer patients.

This form of cancer utilizes the Durie-Salmon system in order for the cancer treatment staff to determine the patient’s position on the spectrum of multiple myeloma as well as the seriousness of their condition. Back pain, especially in the lower region, is one of the main symptoms that may signal the presence of myeloma. This pain is actually a sign of bone issues that materializes as back pain. Abnormal or atypical blood counts is another way to determine the presence of myeloma. These low blood counts often occur in tandem with elevated levels of calcium in the blood cells.

While myeloma can often be an insidious and ravaging form of cancer, these new treatment developments are helping cancer care specialists to more effectively treat the condition in their patients. Due to the unfortunate fact that multiple myeloma does not typically show signs or symptoms until its later stages, these breakthroughs and new treatments are welcome news to those that are suffering from this condition. New processes such as gene expression profiling, and new drugs such as panobinostat have proven to be successful, there continues to be further research and innovation to better understand and battle this disease.