A rare type of cancer whose main symptom is back pain

This disease attacks plasma cells, a type of white blood cell that produces antibodies to fight infection.

Multiple myeloma is the second most common type of blood cancer in the world. Photo: shutterstock.

The Multiple myeloma is kind of cancer From the blood that affects the blood system, and complications occur in the kidneys and bones, and it is difficult to distinguish its symptoms and symptoms from other diseases.

instead of cells Healthy and malignant versions appear that multiply and start producing abnormal antibodies, known as M protein or monoclonal protein, that damage various parts of the body. This is the reason for the presence of the word “multiple” in the name of the disease.

Back pain, the main symptoms

Patients usually feel, before any other symptoms appear, lower back pain, a fairly general condition that can be the result of a simple night’s sleep in an uncomfortable position, intense exercise in the gym, or many other everyday factors. but the lower back pain It is also considered the main symptom of this cancer rare.

It was precisely this malaise that prompted merchant Luiz Fernando Fontenelle, 37, to embark on a long journey of medical examinations and consultations until he discovered the disease. “I was in so much pain and only seven months after my first fracture I received the diagnosis,” he recalls. “I was suspicious of myself because I read about the symptoms on the internet.”

Luis Fernando suffered a setback after undergoing a heart transplant cells Mother. Photo: BBC.

As with Louise Fernando, the disease can lead to fractures, as it leaves the bones weaker; Anemia due to excess plasma cells in the bone marrow, which leads to a decrease in the number cells Blood makers and in more severe cases kidney failure as a result of damage to the renal tubules.

rare cancer

Although rare, it is the second cancer It is one of the most common blood types in the world. This disease is more common in people over 60 years of age, but it is also diagnosed in younger people.

The most emblematic case in world literature occurred in Brazil.

An 8-year-old boy, a resident of Salvador, Bahia was diagnosed. According to the IMF (International Myeloma Foundation in Latin America), he was the first child in history to be diagnosed.

The Multiple myeloma It can be detected by a urine test or a blood test called serum protein electrophoresis, which is ordered when symptoms suggest inflammatory disease, autoimmune disease, acute or chronic infection, or liver or kidney disease.

“Although I consider that screening is not routinely necessary for all people – as it may generate public expenditure that would take resources from fighting other diseases – I consider it unacceptable for a patient to remain symptomatic for so long,” Angelou says. Maiolino, Professor of Hematology at UFRJ (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro):

After the first symptoms appear 29% of patients Multiple myeloma In Brazil, it takes a year to receive a diagnosis and 28% wait longer, according to a survey by Abrale (Brazilian Association of Lymphomas and Leukemia).

“I’ve seen cases of people who’ve been on dialysis, with very high-risk kidneys, who only find out about three years later,” says Maiolino.

evolution of treatments

From the first diagnosis Multiple myelomain the eighteenth century, medicine advanced in the development of both biological knowledge of disease and treatments, which today allow patients with this type of cancer Live longer and healthier.

There is no cure for the disease, but in many cases there are treatments that allow patients to live well, with good control over their symptoms. “It feels like they have a chronic disease like diabetes and high blood pressure,” Maiolino says. Early intervention, in the opinion of the doctor, is the best way to prevent the development of the disease from irreversibly harming the health of patients.

“We use one type of treatment for each stage of the disease, but if the condition is caught late, the patient will not be able to reap the benefits of the early stages of care,” he explains.

Another very common option is a reference to transplant cells Mother. Before transplantation, chemotherapy or radiation therapy is used to make room for existing bone marrow (where the body makes blood, white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets) to create new marrow.

New bone marrow is a gelatinous fluid that can come from a donor or patient. Luis Fernando was transplanted, but suffered a relapse and the disease returned.

“It was more difficult than receiving a diagnosis. I have a specific treatment, with a course of medication every 28 days in a hospital setting and every 21 days at home. I found out Multiple myeloma I’m 28 and I don’t remember having a day without pain. It’s tough, but we’re learning to live with it. The combination of drugs allows me to live a normal life.”

Source consult here.