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Monthly Archives: August 2009

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31 08, 2009

How Does A Physician Know Your Myeloma Is Active?

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Friday afternoon at the IMF conference in Edina, Minnesota we learned, in detail, the criteria for diagnosis in multiple myeloma. Mayo Clinic transplant nurse Teresa Micelli explained there are four basic disorders that affect plasma cells in the bone marrow. Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS), smoldering (indolent) myeloma, plasmacytoma and active myeloma. MGUS and

30 08, 2009

Keep Breathing & Enjoy The Sunset!

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I left the myeloma conference in the Twin Cities early today to catch my flight to Tampa. As usual, my flight was not non-stop. I am in the Charlotte, North Carolina airport and I don't have much time. But I wanted to share an exchange I had with a fellow passenger tonight. I sat next

28 08, 2009

Read About Jackie On www.HelpWithCancer.Org

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Today I met an exceptional cancer survivor named Jackie. I posted the first of three articles about Jackie, and her cancer of the pharynx, on my other blog, www.HelpWithCancer.Org. I know she isn't a multiple myeloma patient. But I was touched by our meeting. Jackie is so strong and brave! Please take the time to

26 08, 2009

Romidepsin

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Here is an info update on the drug, Romidepsin, that one of our readers, Elizabeth, commented about earlier in the week:Romidepsin is a late-stage oncology drug candidate being studied across a range of hematologic malignancies. Over 850 patients have received romidepsin in clinical trials. A registration trial in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) has recently been

26 08, 2009

MMRF Website Helps Explain Myeloma Treatment Options

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The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) features an excellent, in-depth Website listing and explaining treatment options for myeloma patients. One piece of advice: Every newly diagnosed myeloma patient that may be a stem cell transplant candidate now, or in the future, should make arrangements to have their stem cells harvested. This accomplishes two things. First,

25 08, 2009

IMF Patient & Family Seminar Updates Next Week

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I will taking part in the International Myeloma Foundation's Patient and Family Seminar Friday and Saturday in Edina, Minnesota. I understand there will be some new and exciting clinical study data discussed both days. Watch for my reports starting Friday evening.Feel good and keep smiling! Pat

24 08, 2009

Revlimid Works Second-Time-Around

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Good news from a close friend, Stacy, who has been dealing with a very aggressive form of myeloma. She called tonight to let me know her counts started going up almost immediately after she stopped using Revlimid. Now, in preparation for a transplant, she has started the Revlimid again and, in two short months, her

21 08, 2009

My Test Results & Prognosis Delayed Until Tomorrow

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Yesterday I wrote that I would share information I learned from my oncologist, Dr. Anderson today. I want to delay that one day and substitute the following ground-breaking and important journal article reproduced below.Feel good and keep smiling! I am... Everything is fine. No worries! Pat

20 08, 2009

Reflections Of A Clinic Day

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At the mid-point of my three hour IV here in Osceola Medical Center, I thought I would take a moment and reflect on the experience. I just wrote about the two brave and wonderful women sharing the treatment room with me today on our other blog, www.HelpWithCancer.Org. Lois is here with her husband Butch. Lois

19 08, 2009

Chemo-Dialysis (HCH) May Extend Myeloma Patient Lives

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Here is an interesting article I found in Oncology Nursing News from earlier this summer:When used in combination with chemotherapy, a novel procedure called high cut-off hemodialysis (HCH) may improve health and extend life in people with multiple myeloma. Because multiple myeloma causes severe kidney failure, patients often need dialysis. Once they get to that

17 08, 2009

Vaccination Strategies Against Multiple Myeloma

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The book, Multiple Myeloma: Translational and Emerging Therapies, dedicates an entire chapter to the future use of vaccines against multiple myeloma. According to the book, "Development of successful vaccine strategy in MM has been directed at two aspects. First to develop a vaccine stratege able to specifically target MM cells with therapeutic efficacy; and second

17 08, 2009

Anyone Learn Anything About HuLuc63 Or GRN163L?

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Last week I mentioned two new myeloma drugs on the horizon. Anyone know anything about these drugs? I know both are being tested in clinical trials. I know HuLuc63 is hoped to use the bodies monoclonal antibodies to destroy myeloma cells. I know GRN163L is a telomerase inhibitor, which hopefully will block an enzyme found

15 08, 2009

Living with Multiple Myeloma

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Living with Multiple Myeloma is the book I wrote last year about my struggle with multiple myeloma. It is available, at a 15% discount, if you order online. Simple click on the My Cancer Store in the box on the right side of this page. The book is intended to help myeloma patients and their

14 08, 2009

Vitamin D Deficiency May Predict Poorer Outcome In Myeloma Patients

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Karl Volstedt from my myeloma support group in Stillwater, Minnesota, forwarded this article to me:NEW YORK (Reuters Health) Jul 21 - Vitamin D deficiency may predict a poorer outcome in patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma, researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, report in the July issue of the American Journal of Hematology.Among

14 08, 2009

Revlimid Side Effects

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I have been taking Revlimid monthly now for over two years; the first 16 months with Dexamethasone and this last year without Dex. The side effects vary from cycle to cycle. Normally I feel fluish and a bit weak the first three or four days back on the drug following a week to ten days

12 08, 2009

On The Horizon

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A new pamphlet from CancerCare, Advances in the Treatment of Multiple Myeloma, highlights a number of new medications that may soon be available to treat multiple myeloma. Ways to use monoclonal antibodies against myeloma cancer cells is the first new, promising therapy mentioned. HuLuc63 is currently being studied in France, Isreal and the US. Anyone