multiple myeloma


multiple myeloma
a malignant plasma cell tumor of the bone marrow that destroys bone tissue.
[1895-1900; MYEL- + -OMA]

* * *

also called  plasma cell myeloma  or  myelomatosis 

      malignant proliferation (tumour) of cells within the bone marrow that usually occurs during middle age or later and increases in occurrence with age. Myelomas are equally common in males and females and affect any of the marrow-containing bones such as the skull, the flat bones (e.g., ribs, sternum, pelvis, shoulder blades), and vertebrae.

      The disease manifests as a proliferation of abnormal plasma cells or plasmablasts that populate the bone marrow throughout the body. These cells produce large quantities of myeloma protein, a monoclonal antibody that can replace the normal antibodies in the blood, reducing the ability of the body to ward off infection. Myeloma proteins can also collect in the tubules of the kidney and cause renal failure. In addition, bone destruction that releases calcium into the circulation may result in calcium deposition in the kidneys and other abnormal sites.

      Symptoms and signs of multiple myeloma include pain, anemia, weakness, susceptibility to infection, a tendency to hemorrhage, shortness of breath, and kidney insufficiency. Pathological bone fractures may occur, and neurological symptoms may follow the collapse of affected vertebrae. The disease is progressive and is considered incurable. Current treatments are directed toward changing multiple myeloma into a manageable chronic disease and increasing the overall survival rate. Thalidomide is often used initially to treat multiple myeloma and can prevent progression for a variable length of time. When appropriate, bone-marrow transplantation after high-dose chemotherapy can lead to long-term survival. However, the success rate is variable, with complete remissions lasting from only a few months to many years. In the rare instances that a malignant proliferation of plasma cells is confined to one location, the tumour is called a plasmacytoma and can be treated with irradiation or surgery.

David C. Williams
 

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Multiple myeloma — Classification and external resources Micrograph of a plasmacytoma, the histologic correlate of multiple myeloma. H E stain ICD …   Wikipedia

  • multiple myeloma — multiple myeloma. См. болезнь Рустицкого Калера. (Источник: «Англо русский толковый словарь генетических терминов». Арефьев В.А., Лисовенко Л.А., Москва: Изд во ВНИРО, 1995 г.) …   Молекулярная биология и генетика. Толковый словарь.

  • Multiple myeloma — A malignancy of plasma cells (a form of lymphocyte) that typically involves multiple sites within the bone morrow and secretes all * * * multiple myeloma n a disease of bone marrow that is characterized by the presence of numerous myelomas in… …   Medical dictionary

  • multiple myeloma — noun myeloma that develops in several places at the same time • Hypernyms: ↑myeloma * * * noun : a disease of bone marrow characterized by the presence of numerous myelomas in various bones of the body * * * Pathol. a malignant plasma cell tumor… …   Useful english dictionary

  • multiple myeloma — myeloma …   The new mediacal dictionary

  • multiple myeloma — See myeloma cell …   Dictionary of molecular biology

  • multiple myeloma — noun A cancer of the white blood cells. Syn: myelomatosis, plasma cell myeloma, Kahlers disease …   Wiktionary

  • multiple myeloma — A type of cancer that begins in plasma cells (white blood cells that produce antibodies). Also called Kahler’s disease, myelomatosis, or plasma cell myeloma …   English dictionary of cancer terms

  • multiple myeloma — noun Date: 1897 a disease of bone marrow that is characterized by the presence of numerous myelomas in various bones of the body …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • multiple myeloma — mul′tiple myelo′ma n. pat a malignant plasma cell tumor of the bone marrow that destroys bone tissue • Etymology: 1895–1900 …   From formal English to slang


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.