The accurate cause of developing

Myeloma

in patients is not known yet. But doctors attribute increased risk of Myeloma to certain factors. People with certain risk factors are said to be at higher risk of developing Myeloma, though it is not necessary that they will definitely develop Myeloma. These risk factors are as follows-

Age:

Elderly people especially who are above 65 years of age are at higher risk of developing Myeloma as immune system weakens as people get old. It is rarely diagnosed in people, who are under age of 40 years.

Race:

It is seen that Myeloma is more evident in some ethnic groups. People with African-American origin are at higher risk of developing Myeloma. In fact risk of developing this disease is twice in African-Caribbean people as compared to white people.

Gender:

Gender also affects occurrence of Myeloma. It has been noticed that men are more prone to this disease compared to women.

Occupation:

Certain occupations are also linked with an increased risk of Myeloma. People occupied in petro-chemical industries or farming, are at higher risk of developing Myeloma. People in such occupations are widely exposed to harmful substances for longer periods. This could cause changes in body’s immune system as well as bone marrow and plasma cells.

Radiation:

Exposure to high levels of radiation also increases risk of Myeloma.

Medical Conditions:

Certain medical conditions such as Hypercalcemia or excessive calcium in the blood, Anaemia or shortage or reduced function of red blood cells and renal damage or kidney failure also increase risk of Myeloma.

Weak Immune System:

Patients who are more prone to infections due to weakened immune system are also at higher risk of developing Myeloma.

Bone Damage:

Patients with bone damages or diseases relating to bone damage are at higher risk of developing Myeloma.

High Level of Protein in Blood:

Other risk factor is high levels of protein in the blood.

Obesity:

Obese people are also at higher risk as their body functioning is slow and may result in a weak immune system.

Family History of Myeloma:

People who have close family members with myeloma are at a higher risk of developing Myeloma.

Symptoms of Myeloma

There are many symptoms, which can indicate development of Myeloma in a patient. Some of them are listed below.

  • One of the most common symptoms of myeloma is pain in bones. Patients have pain in the spine or vertebrae. Some patients may have pain in ribs, skull or pelvis too.
  • Other symptom of Myeloma is extreme tiredness or lethargy.
  • Kidney problems
  • Easy catching of infections or repeated infections.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Constipation.
  • Depression
  • Drowsiness
  • Unexplained bleeding
  • Easy bruising
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Hypercalcemia or excessive calcium in the blood
  • Anaemia or shortage or reduced function of red blood cells
  • Osteoporosis, bone swelling or fracture
  • High protein levels in the blood or urine

If any of these symptoms occur, patients are advised to consult the doctor as it may be due to development of Myeloma.

Diagnosis and Staging Of Myeloma

Treatment of Myeloma