COVID-19 FAQ #9: Can myeloma patients avoid contracting the COVID-19 infection?
The ninth episode of his ten episode COVID-19 FAQ series, Dr. Brian G.M. Durie outlines how myeloma patients can stay dafe during the COIVD-19 pandemic.
Until there is a vaccine, it is possible to avoid contacting the COVID-19 infection by maintaining physical distancing and staying at home as much as possible.
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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]!
For questions of a specific personal nature, please call the IMF InfoLine coordinators at 800.452.2873 or email them at [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 frequently asked question about the COVID-19 virus infection. This is really a heartfelt question from a patient who says, “Dr. Durie, can I get through all this without developing the COVID-19 infection?”
And, the answer that I can give you is yes, with good care and a little bit of luck, we can all get through this without necessarily having developed the COVID-19 infection. The reason that I can say this is we are starting to understand better that as the infection spreads, it spreads based on clusters. And so, that as clusters are tracked, then the individuals who are in contact with the original spreader can be identified and, as we understand the spreader and the contacts better, it becomes reasonable that you contain a particular cluster and spreading event.
And, as we start to understand these better, then it can be possible to contain clusters and then it’s possible for you to know, well where are those clusters? And, stay well clear of areas where that cluster has been spreading.
And as the clusters are increasingly contained in the coming weeks, one week, two weeks, three weeks, four weeks, as these clusters are contained and spreading is reduced, it is possible for the COVID-19 to, slowly but steadily, to subside. And so, that with due caution, and with due understanding, it is possible that we can all get through this without necessarily being in contact with someone who has emerged from one of those clusters.
And so, the BOTTOM LINE is stay safe at home, avoid physical contact, and hopefully, in the coming months you can stay clear of infection and be ready for when a vaccine is available, a vaccine that can protect you, and you can move forward in a healthy way to be one of those first people to have vaccination and to move forward in a world in which we will always now need to be concerned about this COVID-19 virus.
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®.