Multiple Myeloma

Myeloma begins when a plasma cell becomes abnormal and begins to divide uncontrollably, making more and more abnormal plasma cells. Abnormal plasma cells are called myeloma cells. Over time, the myeloma cells crowd out the normal blood cells in the bone marrow and prevent them from working properly. The disease is called multiple myeloma because it affects many bones. For a video overview about the cancer, click HERE.

Symptoms for multiple myeloma include:

- bone pain
- bone weakness
- fatigue
- weakness
- shortness of breath
- dizziness
- anemia
- frequent infections
- fever
- nosebleeds
- bleeding gums
- higher than normal levels of protein in the blood or urine
- extreme thirst
- a need to urinate often
- dehydration
- kidney problems including kidney failure
- constipation
- loss of appetite
- hypercalcemia
- nervous system problems
- weight loss

For more information visit Myeloma Canada or CCS

Risk factors for multiple myeloma include, but are not limited to:

- History of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS)
- Family history of multiple myeloma
- Obesity and overweight
- Farming
- Weakened immune system

Sources: Mayo Clinic & CCS.

Ways to diagnose multiple myeloma include:

- Blood tests, including: complete blood count, blood chemistry tests, quantitative immunoglobulin test, etc.
- Urine tests
- Bone marrow tests, including biopsy
- Cytogenetic tests
- Immunohistochemistry
- Imaging tests, including x-ray, MRI, CT and PET scans

Sources: CCS and Mayo Clinic

Treatment for multiple myeloma depends exclusively on the patient and the type and stage of myeloma they have. Patient factors include:

- Age and Health
- The type of symptoms
- Complications from the disease
- Eligibility for a stem cell transplant
- Chromosomal changes

Treatments include:

- Targeted therapy
- Immunotherapy
- CAR-T cell therapy
- Chemotherapy
- Corticosteroids
- Bone marrow transplant

Source: CCS & Mayo Clinic.

For more info, visit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society to Canada, and Myeloma Canada.

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Myeloma Canada

Myeloma Canada is the only national charitable organization created by, and for, Canadians impacted by multiple myeloma. We are driven to improve the lives of those affected by this disease by empowering our community through awareness, education, and advocacy programs, and by supporting clinical research to find a cure.

We are committed to making myeloma matter, and have been since our founding in 2005 by two gentlemen who were living with myeloma, Aldo Del Col and John Lemieux.

For more info visit

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada is a voluntary non-profit health organization dedicated to funding blood cancer research and providing education and patient services. Their mission is to find cures for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.

Visit them at