The IMF’s guide through the myeloma journey, from diagnosis to long-term survival. Start by understanding the disease and diagnosis, and proceed through the steps to learn the best tests, treatments, and supportive care currently available.
Step 1DiagnosisView Page
Step 1: Get the correct diagnosis
It is important to diagnose myeloma as early as possible. Myeloma can be slow-moving or more aggressive. A skilled myeloma specialist is able to determine the best approach in your individual situation.
Step 2TestsView Page
Step 2: Tests you really need
Myeloma can have different features in each patient. It is important to understand your disease and to know which tests are best for monitoring your myeloma.
Step 3TreatmentView Page
Step 3: Is treatment necessary?
Deciding that treatment is necessary is the most pressing initial decision post-diagnosis. Since all treatments have side effects, treatment must be medically necessary. This is the case if the patient has one or more Myeloma-Defining Events or if myeloma...
Step 4Supportive CareView Page
STEP 4: Supportive care
As a myeloma patient, you need support to alleviate the physical and emotional impact of living with this illness. The IMF encourages early use of supportive care measures, which are just as important as initiating therapy. This section covers...
Step 6AssessmentView Page
Step 6: Is treatment working?
Timeline for improvement
Be sure to have a discussion with your treating physician about the benefits and side effects of treatment,...
Step 7MaintenanceView Page
STEP 7: Consolidation and maintenance
Maintenance, also called “continuous therapy,” is a treatment that is administered over a long period of time, typically years, in an effort to sustain or enhance response which has already been achieved with prior therapy. The...
Step 8MonitoringView Page
Step 8: Monitoring
With typical novel combination therapies currently used in myeloma, the initial response tends to be quite rapid. Within 2-3 months, major response should have occurred. Treatment may be adjusted to improve tolerance for the longer...
Step 9RelapseView Page
Step 9: Do you need a change in treatment?
It’s important to assess possible relapse very carefully, and for the physician and the patient to discuss available options. One lab test on its own could be flawed, so it’s important to...
Step 10Clinical TrialsView Page
Step 10: Clinical trials and how to find them
A clinical trial is a research study of new treatment that involves patients. Each study is designed to find better ways to prevent, detect, diagnose, or treat cancer and to answer scientific questions. Clinical trials may offer patients...