What occurs during smoldering myeloma? Watch as myeloma expert Dr. Irene Ghobrial explains smoldering myeloma and progression, and patient and Empowerment Lead Lisa Hatfield shares her perspective of learning from smoldering myeloma patients.
Smoldering multiple myeloma, also known as SMM, is an early form of multiple myeloma when patients don’t experience issues or symptoms of the condition.
Dr. Irene Ghobrial:
Smoldering myeloma – and, the name says it; it’s almost myeloma, it has a higher chance of progressing to myeloma – in general, it’s about 10 percent per year, and usually, the bone marrow has more than 10 percent plasma cells…….3:04- 3:23 You want to make sure that patient is followed up carefully, and you want to offer, potentially, clinical trials because we want to prevent progression. The hope in the future is you don’t wait until you have lytic lesions, fractures in your bones, kidney failure, and then we treat. The hope is we treat you earlier, and we can make a huge difference in that early interception for myeloma.
So smoldering myeloma, or SMM, smoldering multiple myeloma, is the precursor to multiple myeloma. Not every person who has smoldering is going to move right into myeloma. They have high-risk smoldering myeloma, which is not the same as high-risk multiple myeloma. It’s really important if you’re diagnosed with smoldering myeloma, to find a specialist.
And the reason why is we have a couple people in one of my support groups who were diagnosed with smoldering myeloma. And depending on the provider you talk with, some choose to treat smoldering myeloma. Some choose to watch and wait and monitor that myeloma. The other important thing to know is there are many clinical trials out there for smoldering myeloma patients. And your provider, particularly any specialists you may have contact with, even if it’s just for a consult, they can help navigate you to those clinical trials that might be best for you. Some of them require you to be close to a large medical center. Some of them allow you to live at your local location and just travel maybe once a month or once every couple of months. But it’s really important to talk to a specialist about those clinical trials to see if that would be something that would be of interest to you.