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Sadly, from a diagnosis standpoint, pre-myeloma conditions are viewed as a sort of red-headed stepchild to multiple myeloma. Meaning, oncology focuses on tests for monoclonal proteins and how they might change the patient’s body chemistry that is the focus.
In fact, many pre-myeloma patients find their pre-cursor disease by accident while looking for some other health problem. My point is that diagnostic testing for SPB, MGUS and SMM are all tests common for testing multiple myeloma.
Fortunately, the diagnostic information gained through mm testing is the same for pre-myeloma diagnostic testing. It is possible however, that your oncologist will prescribe fewer tests gathering less information.
Read the posts linked below to learn more about pre-myeloma diagnostics
Are you struggling with a diagnosis of a single plasmacytoma of bone, monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance or smoldering multiple myeloma? Scroll down the page, post a question or comment and I will reply to you ASAP.
“Multiple Myeloma Blood Tests
Blood tests are essential to accurate diagnosis of this complex disease. They can help your hematologist identify and measure many things to indicate type and stage of disease, including:
Your team may order a bone marrow biopsy to check the cells in the bone marrow, where multiple myeloma starts. For a bone marrow biopsy, a specialist uses a long, thin need to take a small sample of bone marrow. The sample usually comes from the hip bone. Most patients receive local anesthesia to prevent pain at the needle site, sometimes with a sedative to help them relax.
Our pathologists examine the cells under a microscope to identify myeloma cells and determine how many are present. Our pathologists also perform tests to identify certain characteristics in cells to help determine the best treatment options.
Your hematologist may order imaging tests to look for cancer in the body or to identify damage to bones or organs. Imaging tests include X-rays, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultrasound and positron emission tomography (PET).
After testing, our multiple myeloma team (or pre-myeloma team) which consists of hematologists, oncologists and pathologists meet to discuss your results. This meeting ensures that we have all of the information we need for an accurate diagnosis.
Then our physicians and nurse practitioners meet with you, taking time to educate you about the diagnosis, including:
If tests indicate you have multiple myeloma/pre-myeloma, our hematologists (blood cancer experts) determine the stage of cancer. The stage ranges from stage I to III.
Test results could indicate that you have a condition that has not yet developed into multiple myeloma but could progress:
Depending on classification and stage, your team may suggest multiple myeloma treatment. Or they may recommend active surveillance, a “watch and wait” strategy to monitor you closely until symptoms appear or change.
If you already have a blood cancer diagnosis, you may want to meet with a specialist for a second opinion…”
“Since (pre-myeloma) MGUS was first described over 30 years ago, the definition of the entity has evolved. Today, three distinct clinical MGUS subtypes have been defined:
Each clinical MGUS subtype is characterized by unique intermediate stages and progression events…
Furthermore, MGUS has confirmed and reported associations with numerous diseases that are commonly encountered in clinical practice such as osteoporosis and venous thrombosis.(4) Given the fact that MGUS is easily detected in peripheral blood and it can be monitored noninvasively, MGUS represents a readily accessible model to study the conversion of premalignancy to malignancy.(5)…
A more advanced premalignant stage of plasma cell proliferation in non-IgM MGUS is termed smoldering myeloma and is characterized by a much higher risk of progression to multiple myeloma (on average, about 10% per year during the first 5 years of follow-up).(12)…
Recently, a new disease entity termed “light chain MGUS” was defined. It represents the premalignant precursor of a subtype of multiple myeloma called “light chain multiple myeloma” which accounts for almost 20% of all new multiple myeloma cases.(18) The equivalent of smoldering myeloma and smoldering Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia in the spectrum of light chain monoclonal gammopathies is called idiopathic Bence Jones proteinuria (Table 1).(19, 20)…
It should be emphasized that in patients diagnosed with clonal proliferation of plasma cells consistent with a precursor state, the biology and natural history is very different compared with patents diagnosed with multiple myeloma. Importantly, patients with a precursor state should be reassured rather than labeled as having a cancer…
The Mayo Clinic model focuses largely on serum protein abnormalities. For MGUS patients, the following features are considered as adverse risk factors: