Recently Diagnosed or Relapsed? Stop Looking For a Miracle Cure, and Use Evidence-Based Therapies To Enhance Your Treatment and Prolong Your Remission

Multiple Myeloma an incurable disease, but I have spent the last 25 years in remission using a blend of conventional oncology and evidence-based nutrition, supplementation, and lifestyle therapies from peer-reviewed studies that your oncologist probably hasn't told you about.

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Multiple Myeloma Side Effects

Multiple Myeloma Stages
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Long-term side effects from multiple myeloma treatment can be a nightmare for the survivor who achieves the goal of living with this incurable blood cancer beyond the averages only to struggle with serious health problems resulting from “safe and effective” therapies

The issue of multiple myeloma side effects is hidden in plain sight.  What would happen if after your oncologist told you that you had multiple myeloma, he/she said “and by the way, your toxic therapies will cause short, long-term and late stage side effects that can make your life miserable and may even kill you?” 

It is well-established that chemotherapy and radiation cause:

  • Inflammation (read more 1) 
  • premature aging, senescence (read more 2) 
  • DNA damage, (

And it is the system-wide problems caused by DNA damage, senescence and inflammation that are at the root of every side-effect experienced by multiple myeloma patients.

In fact, one of the best kept secrets of conventional oncology is that while chemotherapy and radiation kill cancer, chemotherapy and radiation also promote the relapse of that cancer. (read more 4, 5) 

I am both a long-term myeloma survivor but one who suffers from more than a dozen serious side effects resulting from aggressive conventional therapies. No oncologist ever warned their newly diagnosed patient about possible serious side effects much less mentioned evidence-based therapies shown to reduce or prevent those side effects.

The conventional or traditional approach to myeloma treatment is:

None of these conventional topics mention short, long-term or late stage side effects. None.

Years after my FDA approved, standard-of-care myeloma therapies, I am more likely to die from my side effects than I am to die of multiple myeloma.

And no, those therapies did not put me into complete remission. I do not attribute my long-term survival to conventional therapies. That’s another post.

In my experience, there are three classes of multiple myeloma side effects.

  • Short-term side effects such as nausea, hair loss, diarrhea/constipation
  • Long-term side effects that can make your life miserable but not kill you and
  • Long-term side effects that the myeloma survivor can die from

Though short-term side effects are important and can be managed, this post will focus on life changing/life ending long-term side effects from toxic myeloma therapies- chemotherapy and radiation.

Multiple Myeloma Side Effects causing poor quality of life-

No one ever died from chemo brain or peripheral neuropathy. But talk to a patient who suffers from these well-documented side effects and ask them how their life has been affected by this side effect. You might hear that old cancer saying “the cure is worse than the disease.”

Like all side effects the challenge is to identify each as early as possible and to also identify possible therapies- both conventional and evidence-based non-conventional therapies. In other words, managing your side effects are every bit as important as managing your incurable blood cancer.

For example, I figured out I was suffering from chemo brain a few years after my autologous stem cell transplant.

I decided that my chemo brain should be treated like brain damage. So I decided to pursue every type of brain health therapy I could research- exercise, brain games, nutritional supplementation, etc.

While I don’t believe my brain health is that of a young person (I just turned 64), I will say that my chemo brain has largely healed. I don’t experience any of the memory loss, difficulty multitasking, lack of facial recognition, etc. that I did back in the early 2000’s.

Multiple Myeloma Side Effects that can kill you-

According to research, the top 5 most common causes of death to myeloma patients are listed below.

  1. Heart Failure-
  2. Infections-
  3. Other-
  4. Secondary Cancers-
  5. Multiple Myeloma-

Unfortunately this study does not specify if toxicity is involved in any way in the deaths from multiple myeloma . By this I mean that multiple myeloma can be recorded as the formal cause of death, but kidney damage can contribute to the survivor’s death. And chemotherapy can cause as much kidney damage as myeloma can. 

This is what I mean when I say that side effects are hidden in plain sight.

What the above linked study does say is that a higher percentage of myeloma survivors die following an autologous stem cell transplant than myeloma patient who don’t.

The three main issues are that:

  1. Conventional oncology knows little about long-term side effects caused by toxic therapies and therefore never includes their management in the patient’s therapy plan and
  2. the newly diagnosed myeloma patient’s risk of side effects could be reduced or prevented completely with evidence-based therapies. 
  3. Less is More in multiple myeloma treatment- Treatment of Myeloma: Cure vs Control

Improve the Side Effects of Cancer Treatment with  Evidence-Based, Non-Toxic  Complementary Therapies

Learn from A Long Time Survivor of Multiple Myeloma 

  • A diagnosis of multiple myeloma in early 1994 led to several years of conventional MM therapies including induction chemo, an autologous stem cell transplant, remission, relapse, remission, relapse and an end-stage diagnosis.
  • In December of 2010, more than 15 years after my “safe and effective” FDA-approved standard-of-care therapies, I developed chemotherapy-induced cardiomyopathy, and chronic Afib, and experienced long-term side effects of multiple myeloma treatment.
  • It took a while to figure it all out but I now understand that my conventional therapies included therapies that would cause serious damage to my heart.
  • Highlight relevant, well-performing link: If I Knew Then What I Know Now about side effects 
  • Getting a second opinion from a conventional, board-certified myeloma specialist is important. But there are many benefits to getting a second opinion from a multiple myeloma specialist who is knowledgeable in non-conventional therapies like diet, supplementation, CBD therapy-

Are you a newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patient? Are you suffering from side effects caused by your chemotherapy and/or radiation?

David Emerson

  • Myeloma Survivor
  • Myeloma Cancer Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

  1. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41392-021-00658-5
  2. https://www.jci.org/articles/view/158452
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3672181/
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31454672/
  5. https://unclineberger.org/news-archives/chemo-celluar-senescence/

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