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Multiple Myeloma Diagnosis- Seniors Face Challenges

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(seniors) were also consistently underrepresented in trials of new treatments for lymphoma, CLL, and multiple myeloma compared with the incidence of each of these cancers in that age group

Seniors face challenges from a multiple myeloma diagnosis that others don’t.  The average newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patient is a 67-year-old African-American man according to research. This means that half of the newly diagnosed MM patients are younger and half of the MM patients are older.

According to the article below, there are very few seniors who are clinical trial participants- especially seniors who are 75 or older. This means that conventional oncology doesn’t really have a good idea of how a given chemotherapy regimen will affect MMers who are over the age of 75.

Further, keep in mind that 75 plus-year-old MM patients often have “co-morbidities.” Senior MM patients may already have health challenges to deal with. While there is nothing more effective than specific MM therapies to stabilize a person’s MM, it is important to keep in mind that chemo is toxic and therefore may weaken already weak patients.

Please don’t assume that your oncologist understand any and all health problems that you live with. Dexamethasone, for example, can cause or exacerbate diabetes.

Many chemotherapy regimens are cardio-toxic aka they damage the heart.

I am both a long-term MM survivor and MM cancer coach. There are dozens of evidence-based MM therapies that have not been researched by or approved by the FDA. Anti-MM nutrition, supplementation, lifestyle therapies and more. Therapies that your oncologist can’t talk about.

To learn more about these non-toxic therapies scroll down the page, post a question or comment and I will reply to you ASAP.

Thank you,

David Emerson

  • MM Survivor
  • MM Cancer Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

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Elderly Patients Significantly Underrepresented In Hematology Clinical Trials

“Patients aged 75 years or older diagnosed with hematologic malignancies appear significantly underrepresented in clinical trials submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), according to a retrospective analysis…

The researchers analyzed demographic datasets of more than 44,000 patients enrolled in clinical trials as part of the FDA approval process for hematologic cancer therapies from 2005 to 2015. Patients were grouped into disease categories based on the diagnosis specified for trial entry and age – younger than 65 years, 65 to 74 years, and 75 years or older. They were then compared with the age distribution of incidence cases by site using the SEER database.

In total, 45 percent (19,908) of patients were enrolled in lymphoma trials; 24 percent (10,465) in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) trials; 22 percent (9,605) in multiple myeloma (MM) trials; 2 percent (1,052) in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) trials; 6 percent (2,711) were classified as “other” trials, which included myeloproliferative neoplasms and trials enrolling multiple malignancies; and less than 1 percent (403) in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) trials.

More than half of patients were 65 years or older in these trials, excluding those enrolled in the CLL and AML/MDS trials. In particular, more than 85 percent of elderly patients comprised the ALL trials.

Patients under 65 years of age were overrepresented in all trials compared with the incidence of cancer in this age group. For example, researchers found that 79.7 percent of patients enrolled in trials for CML were under 65, but only 50.6 percent of patients diagnosed with CML are in this age group.

On the other hand, patients aged 75 and older account for 28.6 percent of CML diagnoses, yet this age group made up a mere 3.8 percent of those enrolled in clinical trials to evaluate new treatments for the disease. They were also consistently underrepresented in trials of new treatments for lymphoma, CLL, and multiple myeloma compared with the incidence of each of these cancers in that age group.

“Regardless, I am at a loss to explain why patients with CML, there is such a disproportion among patients aged 75 or older,” Kanapuru said.

On the plus side, both arms of elderly patients aged 65 to 74 years old mirrored one another in the proportion of patients enrolled in lymphoma and CML trials.

“This analysis shows how important it is for us to actually do more subgroup analyses of patients over 65 years,” Kanapuru said. “I am heartened by the conclusion that we have at least patients in the 65 to 74-year-old age group represented adequately. But we have to understand that the patients on clinical trials still are the healthier patients and may not represent the 65 to 74-year-old of-age patients in the real world.”

 

 

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