When a person starts experiencing symptoms of multiple myeloma, then the treatment would be more on relieving pain besides controlling this disease’s complications. It can also slow down the progress of multiple myeloma and stabilize the patient’s condition.Overall, the treatment for the multiple myeloma entirely depends on the symptoms and other aspects of the patient. The main goal of the treatment is to eliminate myeloma cells, control its growth, and allow patients to stay an active life. The care plan will also include the treatment for symptoms and side effects.
The treatment for people with symptomatic myeloma includes both treatments for controlling the growth of the disease and improving life quality. When you contact a cancer specialist, they provide the right treatment plan, which includes-
- Induction Therapy- Which controls of cancer and helps in relieving symptoms
- Consolidation- Done with more chemotherapy and stem cell transplant
- Maintenance Therapy- This is for a prolonged period to prevent cancer recurrence
Instant treatment might not be important
When a person is suffering from multiple Myeloma but has not been experiencing any symptoms, then he might not need treatment. Nonetheless, the physician will monitor his condition regularly for discovering signs that this disease is developing and it involves periodic urine and blood tests.
However, when a person develops advanced symptoms and signs of multiple Myeloma, then the doctor might find it suitable to start the treatment process.
Some standard treatment choices-
This kind of treatment concentrates on particular abnormalities within the cancer cells, which permit them to endure. Carfilzomib, Bortezomib, and Lxazomib considered targeted drugs, which do block a substance’s action in myeloma cells, which breaks down protein, and this action results in the death of the myeloma cells. The targeted-therapy drugs can be administered via a pill form or a vein in the patient’s arm.
The chemotherapy drugs destroy fast-growing cells that include myeloma cells, and these drugs injected through a person’s vein or taken in a pill form. Under chemotherapy, doctors prescribe different drugs.
Some of these drugs are mentioned below-
- Bendamustine HCL Vial– This medication is used for treating certain cancer types, including Multiple Myeloma. Once it goes into the body, it kills cancer cells or stops their further growth. The dosage of this medication depends on the symptoms and body size.
- Cyclophosphamide– This drug is preferred for treating different types of cancer, including Multiple Myeloma. It is majorly used for treating a specific kind of kidney disease. Doctors recommend taking this drug when symptoms of Myeloma are high. One must drink more and more fluids so that more and more urine passes to avoid bladder in the kidney.
- Doxorubicin HCL Vial– It is one type of chemotherapy drug used for treating different kinds of cancer diseases. It helps in slowing the progress of cancer cells. The doctor injects this medicine into the body, and the dosage depends on the medical condition.
- Melphalan Tablet– It belongs to the class of drugs called Alkylating Agents. It helps in bringing down the growth of such cancer cells. The dosage of this drug entirely depends on the medical condition and response of the treatment.
These drugs make use of the patient’s immune system to ward off myeloma cells. Drugs like lenalidomide, thalidomide, and pomalidomide do the job of improving the cells of the immune system. The immune system of our body recognizes and attack cancer cells. Commonly, these medicines are taken in a pill form.
Stem Cell Transplant
Doctors use a particular machine that ejects some of the stem cells to freeze and store them. Next, the patient would undergo high-dose chemotherapy that helps to destroy almost every cell in the bone marrow. It will also eliminate plasma cells, causing disease, and affecting healthy cells.
Later, the doctor would place the saved stem cells in your streams using a tube called Catheter. This stem cell transplantation process will help the patient to live longer than the expected one.
Some corticosteroids, like dexamethasone and prednisone, regulate the patient’s immune system for controlling inflammation in his body. They also turn active against the myeloma cells. A patient can take corticosteroids through a vein or a pill form.
This kind of treatment process makes use of beams of energy, like protons and X-rays, for damaging myeloma cells besides lessening their growth. This therapy might also be useful for shrinking myeloma cells in particular areas quickly.
Radiation therapy is used for treating areas of specific damaged bones by Multiple Myeloma. Sometimes, a few cancer cells do not respond to chemotherapy or drugs, leading to pain. In case Myeloma weakens the vertebral bones, then bones start collapsing, further putting pressure on the spinal cord.
Patients who face this issue witness weaknesses in leg muscles and urination problems, etc. If there is no prompt radiation therapy, then the patient will end up getting paralysis.
How to take care of self?
When you start getting the symptoms of Multiple Myeloma in the body, it is important that you take right care of self.
According to one report from the American Cancer Society, there were around 30,000 people in the US diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2018. The number keeps increasing year by year. A person who faces multiple myeloma and has side effects from chemotherapy may have lost appetite. Furthermore, there are signs of depression and other issues.
When the doctor diagnose you with Multiple Myeloma, it is vital to maintain proper nutrition. Following good nutrition during the treatment process works positively. Many people who have this cancer may face damaged kidneys and reduction immunity.
Pumping in Iron-
People with multiple myeloma can face low red blood cell count. Once the cancerous cells starts multiplying in the blood, there is not much space for red blood cells. However, low count of iron in the blood also causes anemia. In such situation, the doctor may suggest foods that contain more iron and other supplements. Some of the foods recommended are-
- Lean Red Meat
- Tropical fruits like pineapple and papaya.
As mentioned above, multiple myeloma leads to kidney disease in some people. It is important that kidneys must work hard and to make it run safely, it is important to include right diet. Cut back the amount of salt, alcohol and potassium in your diet. In case, the blood calcium levels are high in your blood, then there will be some changes in your diet.
Include Fiber in diet-
If you are undergoing chemotherapy, then there are chances of constipation. So increase the intake of fiber and drink enough water throughout the day. The doctor would recommend diet carrying enough fiber. This include-
- Whole grains such as brown rice
- Dried fruits like figs, apricots, and prunes
- Nuts, beans and lentils
It is highly essential that right intake of food and diet is followed to beat cancerous cells in the initial stage itself.