Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"
I am currently in remission after a stem cell transplant for multiple myeloma. My M protein is 0.34. At what point would I need to start treatment again? The M protein was 6 at the time of diagnosis. I have not been on any maintenance therapy. Thank you.
Selina M. Luger, MD, Director of the Leukemia Program and Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, responds:
Without knowing the particulars of your case, it is difficult to comment. However, in general, it is usually the trend of the protein and not the absolute number that matters. For example, is the number going up or is it stable? Also we don't only look at the protein level but also other information, like the bones, the other blood tests and sometimes the bone marrow.
Mar 9, 2010 - The presence and number of focal lesions detected by whole-body magnetic resonance imaging strongly predicts the conversion of asymptomatic multiple myeloma to symptomatic disease, according to a study published online Feb. 22 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. In a related study in the same issue, researchers report that survival after treatment for multiple myeloma decreases with age.
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