Tests and Staging
Multiple myeloma tests are diverse and complex. Tests are used throughout the course of your disease — for initial diagnosis, discovering the type of myeloma you have, staging the disease, and for monitoring your response to treatment.
Staging multiple myeloma is determined by tests. When multiple myeloma is diagnosed, the stage of the disease varies from patient to patient.
The most commonly used clinical staging system, the Durie-Salmon Staging System, demonstrates the correlation between the amount of myeloma and the damage it has caused, such as bone disease or anemia.
Staging a can also be done according to prognosis, or expected survival. The most common staging system for multiple myeloma that is based on prognostic factors is the Revised International Staging System (R-ISS).
Multiple Myeloma Prognosis
A multiple myeloma prognosis is determined by both the number and specific properties of myeloma cells in a given patient. These specific properties include the following: the
- growth rate of myeloma cells,
- the production rate of monoclonal antibody proteins,
- and the production or non-production of various cytokines (molecules that allow immune cells to talk to each other) and chemicals that damage or significantly impair other tissues, organs, or bodily functions.