Multiple myeloma also known as plasma cell myeloma or Kahler's disease .It is a cancer of plasma cells, a type of white blood cell normally responsible for producing antibodies. In multiple myeloma, collections of abnormal plasma cells accumulate in the bone marrow, where they interfere with the production of normal blood cells. Bisphosphonate treatment is often started along with chemo. If the areas of damaged bone continue to cause symptoms, radiation therapy may be used.
Myeloma makes up 1.3 percent of all new cancer cases in Canada and 1.8 percent of all cancer deaths. Men outnumber women amongst both newly diagnosed cases (1,300 men and 1000 women) and deaths (730 men and 640 women). Relatively little conclusive research has been conducted on the epidemiology of myeloma in Canada. The average age at diagnosis is 62 years for men and 61 years for women, and only 4% of cases are diagnosed in individuals under the age of 45.