By: Dr. Emran of Simple Health Radio
Multiple myeloma is a cancer of the blood. Specifically, it affects the bone marrow and affects the plasma cells. Lymphocytes, also called white blood cells, are a part of the body’s immune system. They are found in the bone marrow, lymph nodes, intestines, and circulating in the blood normally.
White blood cells help to prevent infections by creating antibodies to attack and kill foreign substances, viruses, bacteria, and fungus.
In multiple myeloma, the white blood cells are affected by an abnormal protein called “M” which creates abnormal antibodies. This M protein multiplies at a very high rate and weekends the white blood cells, which in turn weakens the immune system.
People who have multiple myeloma will have problems with their bones, kidneys, and other healthy cells in their body. They may become anemic or have very low platelet levels, which cause abnormal bleeding and bruising.
Some people who come to the emergency room with a broken bone or kidney failure may actually be diagnosed with multiple myeloma as the primary cause. Last year, over 32,000 cases were diagnosed in the United States.
Fortunately, multiple myeloma is treatable if the appropriate medications are started early.
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