Multiple Myeloma

My definition from stuff I’ve read so any errors will be as a result of me being dense and not understanding the information to hand!

Myeloma is a cancer of the bone marrow arising from plasma cells.  Instead of antibodies a useless monoclonal protein is produced thus leading to an increased susceptibility to infections.  It also commonly affects bones.  All our bones are constantly breaking down and renewing themselves however with myeloma the bones break down faster than they can be replaced resulting in weakened areas and potentially fractures.


Kidney damage can also occur as a result of calicum being released into the blood as a result of the bone damage which then blocks kidney function.  Additionally in about 15% to 20% of people incomplete immunoglobulins are produced which in excess are particularly likely to damage the kidney.


Myeloma generally affects older people, the median* age of diagnosis being 68 or 71 depending on where you look, however it appears to be on the increase in people under 55.  4,000 people are diagnoised each year in the UK and 20,000 in the USA.  Although classed as rare, acounting for 1% of cancers, myeloma is apparently one of the fastest growing cancers in respect of incidence in the western world.


At the moment myeloma is incurable but can be effectively treated/managed.


Statistically it generally picks on old black men.


I’m a white woman diagnosed at 39.


Statistically a myeloma patient has a 34% chance of making it five years after diagnosis.


Since I don’t fit the first statistic I’m certainly going to pay the second one no attention other than to leave it standing.




*  Median is not the same as average!  In this instance median means that 50% of people are diagnosed below 71 and 50% above 71.

3 responses to “Multiple Myeloma

  1. Hi , I also got MM when I was 39 , spent my 40th birthday in the cancer hospitial in Toronto Ontario . That was 11 years ago this month that I was told I had MM. Been fighting the good fight since and winning. You can read more of my story on my blog. Good luck to you and alway have a positive outlook it works wonders.

  2. Feresa,
    I wanted to order two MM Buddies for my younger twin grandchildren – a boy and a girl. Didn’t see on Etsy how to custom order the colors…is that still possible? I wanted a #992 pink with white hearts, and a #960 blue with white stripes…not picky about what you do with the cute little arms. Is there a way for me to order these on Etsy? Thanks!

  3. I like your new look and you are so far ahead of me, of course Ihave been travelling all year (my excuse), but am switching toWordpress for my blog. I amy keep the one I have and just move. Found out if you get too popular your site can be removed with no notice…..So keep up the good work, I started crocheting again, not very good at it but it is improving. I am not sure if this happened to you, but my arms were totally useless for a year , but now I am able to work pretty good. My tension is terrible. I saw an article in the paper about aids being “cured” after a stem cell transplant?? Promising. How are you doing post immunization. Merry Christmas!!!!

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