Multiple myeloma stage 3 , Laboratory tests will determine the extent of the cancer, which is classified in stages. The classification of the stages is complicated and is based on the levels of protein, calcium, renal function, and the presence of cancer in the bone.
Your doctor will order blood tests to detect anemia, which is a low level of red blood cells. The disease causes anemia when plasma cells accumulate in the bone marrow and prevent the normal production of red blood cells.
Blood tests also detected if blood has unusually high levels of protein, a sign of large amounts of immunoglobulin made by the cancerous plasma cells. Your doctor could ask for urine samples for 24 hours to scan them for excessive amounts of protein.
Your doctor may order x-rays of the long bones, skull and chest to help confirm the diagnosis and detect bone weakness (in the bones). They will also make you a bone marrow biopsy to confirm an abnormally high level in the plasma cells.
This procedure is done under local anesthesia in the doctor’s office. A long needle is used to remove a small amount of bone marrow and examine it under a microscope. Normally, the plasma cells represent less than 50% of the cells in the bone marrow.
However, in patients with multiple myeloma, this percentage increases of 10 to 19%. Multiple myeloma is diagnosed if a bone marrow biopsy shows more than 30% of plasma cells.
In multiple myeloma the doctor determines the stage of the cancer diagnosis. Multiple myeloma is divided into the following stages depending on the mass of the tumor cells (myeloma cells mass):
- Stage I: cancer cells have spread through the body and symptoms of the disease may not have.
- Stage II: a moderate number of cancer cells have spread through the body.
- Stage III: a large number of cancer cells have spread through the body. Could also have anemia as a result of a decrease in red blood cells; high levels of calcium in the blood due to damage to the bones; more than three bone tumors; or a high level of M protein in the blood, a sign of the extent of the tumor in the body.
Duration Around 15% of patients die within the first three months after the diagnosis. In the majority of cases, the disease progresses slowly for two to five years, followed by a short period where symptoms worsen quickly.
Prevention It might be possible to prevent some cases of multiple myeloma to avoid exposure to radiation, benzene or pesticides.
Treatment If you don’t have any symptoms, treatment could be delayed until the disease progresses, depending on their general State of health. Initial treatment may include:
- Four to six applications of chemotherapy: are supplied in a period of one to two years. With treatment, around 70% of the patients improve and there is no sign of the disease in about 10% of cases.
- Intravenous (into a vein) injections of bisphosphonates: this class of drugs quimioterepeuticos, often supplied once a month, can reduce the risk of fractures in the bones and improve survival in case of myeloma.
- Chemotherapy: recently several types of medications have been developed quimioterepeuticos which has been proven are effective in the treatment of multiple myeloma. Cancer specialists experienced in the treatment of myeloma may select the most appropriate treatments once made the diagnosis of myeloma
- Radiation therapy: to treat the tumors in the bones.
Intravenous injections of immunoglobulin: to prevent serious infections.
- Bone marrow transplant: this can help patients under age 65, especially if this treatment applies just the disease appears.
It is not clear whether any of these therapies can help cure patients, but often they can control the disease for years.
Prognosis and evolution of multiple myeloma depends on the stage of the tumor. Proper treatment can positively influence the evolution of the disease. Life expectancy increases if the treatment slows the progression of multiple myeloma or reduces tumor.
In addition, it is possible to treat the symptoms caused by multiple myeloma, so increase the quality of life of the patient. A cure is not possible, but the period without discomfort can be very long (though always relapse occur). If it is not, the multiple myeloma can be extended by all of the bone marrow.
The tumor may be the cause of the process of bone degeneration that occurs in the spontaneous fractures with vertebral collapse. Multiple myeloma can also affect the kidneys. Antibody deficiency characteristic of multiple myeloma makes patients extremely vulnerable to infections. Due to the damage of bone marrow, it may also occur bleeding due to lack of platelets in the blood and clotting factors.
Multiple myeloma monitoring plays an important role after the treatment. During this, revisions are made at regular intervals.
These tests usually do a physical examination of the patient, various blood tests and x-rays.
With the test of bone density in the lumbar area of the spine and the femur, the doctor can determine if there is loss of bone density and marked as is.
Monitoring serves to detect early and treat relapses of multiple myeloma and the damage caused by the disease.