CR or VGPR Makes NO Difference in Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma

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Complete Response (CR) or Very Good Partial Response (VGPR) In Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma Makes NO Difference in Overall Survival. None. 

It would be logical to think that a complete response or MDR status translated into a longer overall survival. I know I thought this when I had my autologous stem cell transplant. According to the two studies linked and excerpted below, I was wrong to think this.

Click the image below-

Multiple Myeloma Mind Map

Please don’t misunderstand me. Yes, a complete response is a positive indicator for a long overall-survival. But the opposite is not true. Not achieving a CR does not mean that you will not live a long OS. I had my autologous stem cell transplant in 12/95, relapsed about a year later and here I am writing this blog post 22 plus years later.

Or as Dr. Rajkumar (MM specialist) put it:

“It is one thing to say that achievement of complete response is a prognostic marker, but quite another to take that to mean we need to treat patients until they reach complete response.”

22 plus years of surviving MM and coaching MM patients had taught me that the key to living a long-overall survival in MM is to use the best of both conventional FDA approved MM and combine it with the best of non-conventional, evidence-based MM therapies to manage your MM. It is not about CR, VGPR or MDR.

It is about the quality of life (QOL) and overall survival (OS).

Have you been diagnosed with multiple myeloma? If so, what stage? What symptoms are you experiencing? Bone pain? Anemia? Kidney damage?

Please scroll down the page, post a question or a comment and I will reply to you ASAP.

Thank you,

David Emerson

  • Long-term MM Survivor
  • MM Cancer Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

Recommended Reading:

No Association Between Response Rates and Survival in Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma

“There was no association between conventional response outcomes, such as complete response (CR) or very good partial response (VGPR), and survival in patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma, according to the results of a meta-regression analysis published recently in the European Journal of Hematology…

“We explored the relationship between response to initial treatment and survival in patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma, based on data from 63 randomized clinical trials”…

Meta-regression analyses failed to demonstrate any association between CR or (CR or VGPR) with either overall survival or progression-free survival both in patients receiving autologous stem cell transplant [ASCT] and in non-ASCT patients.”

Should Myeloma Patients Panic If They Do Not Achieve A Complete Response?

“Of course, the cause of my worry is not that patients have not achieved the magical complete re­sponse or minimal residual disease-negative status, but at how mis­in­ter­pre­ta­tion of data can lead to needless concern, unnecessary chemo­ther­a­py increased side effects and cost of care, and even harm

Multiple myeloma is a remarkably heterogeneous disease; the outcomes vary dramatically depending on the patient’s chromosomal abnormalities. The type of myeloma one patient has may be completely different than the myeloma another patient has; it may not even be the same disease….”


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