Recently Diagnosed or Relapsed? Stopping 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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When the Myeloma Patient Does NOT Respond to Velcade Induction

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“Failure (of the multiple myeloma patient) to respond to a bortezomib-based induction was found to be an independent risk factor for mortality.”

When my oncologist prescribed a triplet for my induction therapy, it never occurred to me that I wouldn’t “respond.” I don’t think any newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) patient begins induction therapy thinking that there is even a chance that he/she might not achieve at least some sort of remission from an induction that includes velcade (Bortezomib).


I received my medical file in 2017, almost 20 years after I concluded my conventional therapies. The oncologist who was in charge of my autologous stem cell transplant made a small hand-written that I had reached stage 2B after my initial diagnosis of non-secretory MM a year and a half previously and after I had just undergone five rounds of induction therapy. Needless to say, I did not respond to my induction therapy.

If you’re reading this blog post it may be because you have not responded to your Bortezomib-based induction therapy either.

Several things to consider. First and foremost, there is a long and growing list of standard-of-care chemotherapy regimens that your oncologist will recommend to you as “salvage” therapy. Keep in mind however, that according to the study linked and excerpted below, the fact that you don’t respond to bortezomib based induction therapy indicates that your survival is, on average, inferior.

Consider those evidence-based, non-toxic therapies shown to be cytotoxic to multiple myeloma. In other words, consider therapies shown to integrate or enhance the efficacy of MM therapies such as Revlimid (lenalidomide) or kyprolis (carfilzomib).

The important thing for you to remember is that multiple myeloma is a complex blood cancer. Conventional oncology can’t understand every aspect of MM management. Consider those therapies that have kept me around since 1994.

Have you been diagnosed with multiple myeloma? To learn more about both conventional and evidence-based non-conventional therapies, scroll down the page, post a question or comment and I will reply to you ASAP.

Thank you,

David Emerson

  • MM Survivor
  • MM Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

Recommended Reading:

According to research, 20-25% of newly-diagnosed multiple myeloma patients (NDMM) don’t respond to bortezomib (velcade) based induction therapy.

“RESULTS-¬†Two hundred and ninety five patients met inclusion criteria and 74 (25%) were non-responsive to bortezomib-containing induction. Non-responsive patients were older, more anemic and had more often ISS-3, del17p and ECOG performance status 2-4 (table 1). Notably, these patients received less often a bi-weekly bortezomib schedule, a triple-drug regimen and high dose melphalan treatment at first line…

2ndPFS in patients who received salvage second line therapy immediately following induction failure was similar to that measured in bortezomib-responsive patients receiving 2nd-line therapy for disease progression, approaching 14 months. However, survival from time of salvage 2nd-line treatment was significantly lower among patients non-responsive to bortezomib-based induction compared to that measured in responsive patients (25 months vs. not reached, respectively, p=0.024; Fig. b).

CONCLUSIONS- Failure to respond to a bortezomib-based induction was found to be an independent risk factor for mortality. Despite the non-inferior 2ndPFS reported in these patients as compared with their bortezomib-responsive counterparts, survival remained significantly inferior. Possibly this difference is because non-responsive patients are less likely to respond to further proteasome inhibitor therapy at following relapses. Randomized controlled trials are needed to test whether intensification of induction and/or of further treatment may improve the poor prognosis of patients who fail to respond to bortezomib-based induction.


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