COVID-19 FAQ #8: Is physical distancing still recommended for myeloma patients?
The eighth episode of his ten episode COVID-19 FAQ series, Dr. Brian G.M. Durie discusses if physical distancing is still necessary for myeloma patients as states begin reopening.
Have a question? Submit it to [email protected]
IMF Chairman Brian G.M. Durie, MD welcomes your questions about the latest myeloma treatments, research, controversies and quality of life issues. If you have a question you think might be of interest to the myeloma community, please send to [email protected]!
Videos in the COVID-19 Series
- FAQ #1: How can myeloma pts reduce the possibility of being exposed to the coronavirus?
- FAQ #2: What do myeloma patients need to know about COVID-19?
- FAQ #3: Do myeloma patients need to adjust their treatment?
- FAQ #4: What are some of the treatment modifications myeloma patients should consider?
- FAQ #5: What are the risk factors that could lead myeloma patients to develop serious consequences from the COVID-19 infection?
- FAQ #6: What precautions should myeloma patients take when getting their groceries?
- FAQ #7: Is it safe for myeloma patients to take walks?
- FAQ #8: Is physical distancing still recommended for myeloma patients?
- FAQ #9: Can myeloma patients avoid contracting the COVID-19 infection?
- FAQ #10: Should Myeloma patients undergo routine COVID-19 antibody testing?
- FAQ #11: Are MGUS and smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM) patients considered to be at higher risk for severe consequences from a COVID-19 infection?
- FAQ #12: If a myeloma patient takes Revlimid® (lenalidomide) as maintenance treatment, should this patient continue with that treatment during the pandemic?
- FAQ #13: Is it safe for myeloma patients to resume in-person doctors' visits?
This “Ask Dr. Durie” is a very important question right now, which is, “is physical distancing during this COVID crisis continuing to be important?”
And the answer to this is yes. During these times of reopening across the U.S., it is still extremely important for vulnerable groups, which does include patients with myeloma, as well as MGUS and smoldering myeloma, to be very cautious about possible exposure to COIVD-19.
And so, what does that mean day to day? Well, within your group of family and friends, one needs to be extremely cautious what the other people in your group of family and friends are doing in terms of traveling, coming in contact with other people, so that you’re aware of possible risks within your own normal social group.
What we’ve learned during this COVID-19 crisis, is that a lot of infections do occur within this close contact groupings. Please be very, very, cautious and be aware of what’s happening within your close family and social group.
Beyond that, it is still quite important for myeloma patients to avoid mixing in large crowds or groups for sure.
And, I absolutely recommend against any kind of traveling, unless it is really essential. Obviously, as things are reopening, and you need to travel to and from the myeloma clinic, assessed and should be done in as careful a way as possible.
But, BOTTOM LINE, for the time being, during this reopening process and the coming months, please continue to be very careful, practice physical distancing, along with social networking, which is really important to stay strong. But be very much aware about the risk of infection and stay home as much as possible.
Dr. Brian G.M. Durie serves as Chairman of the International Myeloma Foundation and serves on its Scientific Advisory Board. Additionally, he is Chairman of the IMF's International Myeloma Working Group, a consortium of nearly 200 myeloma experts from around the world. Dr. Durie also leads the IMF’s Black Swan Research Initiative®.