Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer that begins in plasma cells, white blood cell that are important to a healthy immune system. Over time, myeloma cells accumulate in the bone marrow, forming tumors in many of the body’s bones. These tumors inhibit the bone marrow from making enough healthy blood cells and may weaken the bones.
The causes of multiple myeloma are not fully understood yet, it is more common in older people, especially men, and African Americans. More than 75% of multiple myeloma cases occur between the age group of 55-85 years.
The estimated mortality rate from multiple myeloma worldwide is 72,453 deaths yearly.
It often takes more than 3 visits with a physician before being diagnosed with myeloma. Delays in diagnosis lead to poorer prognosis and more disease-related complications, which impact the quality of life and survival.
Keep an eye out for the following signs and symptoms: Bone pain, weakness or fatigue, weight loss, frequent infections, and frequent urination.
This Myeloma Awareness month, help create awareness for earlier diagnoses and healthy futures. Stop this devastating cancer from cutting short the lives of those we care about.