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Monthly Archives: October 2009

30 10, 2009

Notes From Managing Myeloma Teleconference

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Here are a few highlights for those of you that did not participate in the interactive program, Managing Myeloma: An Expert’s Update, featuring Dr. Kenneth Anderson of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The program was sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Thursday.Having been exposed to Dana-Farber’s myeloma treatment philosophy through patient and staffing contacts in Boston,

29 10, 2009

Any Recommendations For Myeloma Treatment In Florida?

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If you follow my blog(s) you already know my wife, Pattie, and I are in the process of relocating to Florida. Our home is about 45 minutes north of Tampa and Clearwater on the Gulf Coast. For now I am still traveling back to Minnesota and Wisconsin for my treatment. Mayo does have a clinic

29 10, 2009

Why Maroon?

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You may notice patients and staff wearing maroon wrist bands whenever you attend myeloma related seminars or events, similar to the bright yellow Lance Armstrong "Live Strong!" wrist band we have all seen for years. The maroon masthead at the top of this page is a modified version of the cover of my book, Living

27 10, 2009

Physicians Need To Look Past Age Related Probabilities When Diagnosing Cancer

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Did you happen to see this article earlier in the week on CancerCare.Com? Very, very basic. Skim if you like and I will comment on the back end:9 Common Symptoms of MyelomaBy Krisha McCoy, MSMedically reviewed by Cynthia Haines, MD While there are some telltale signs associated with multiple myeloma, many symptoms are vague and

26 10, 2009

Thank’s Everyone!

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I have already received a number of e-mails from fellow myeloma survivors with their suggestions and support following Friday's post. Thank's everyone! Several readers have also written detailed and helpful comments about my concerns that are both profound and very instructive.Feel good and keep smiling! I know I am, knowing I have such good friends

25 10, 2009

Back To My "New Normal."

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I would be lying if I said I hadn't thought about my latest labs today. But it was a busy day of household projects and shopping. Pattie and I took a long walk with our dog along a tidal area close to our Florida home. Herons and egrets. A cool gulf breeze. It sure is

23 10, 2009

Advice Is Easy To Give–Not So Easy To Follow!

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This past week I questioned the need of some myeloma patients to become overly technical and obsess over their test results and labs. "Try and live for today" I wrote. "Don't just watch and wait--Live!" My point? Once you are diagnosed with multiple myeloma, there isn't a lot a person can do to change their

23 10, 2009

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,

20 10, 2009

More About The "Technical Side"

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One of our readers, Jerry, just made an excellent comment about yesterday's post. He likes the technical info and feels he can always skim over results or numbers that don't interest him. Check out his comment and my response. I was trying to make two points. First, it takes most myeloma patients six months to

19 10, 2009

Are Myeloma Blogs Becoming Too Technical?

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Cancer blogs and Websites run the gambit from highly emotional personal stories to highly technical reviews of drug trials and scientific studies. Multiple myeloma sites are no different. After my initial diagnosis, I soon became frustrated by the lack of technical information available in books or on the Internet. That is why I wrote my

19 10, 2009

MLN-4924 & MLN-9708

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Here are two more drugs that are expected to "work better" or "be better" than Velcade. I first wrote about both of these last July. Both are going to be manufactured by the same company, Millennium, that makes Velcade. MLN-4924. A new drug in Phase I trials that has shown encouraging results in pre-clinical trials

18 10, 2009

Feel Free To Contact Me Anytime!

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I just recieved an e-mail from a reader this evening who had been unable to locate my e-mail address for quite some time. It is clearly incorporated into the header of our www.HelpWithCancer.Org blog, but I just checked and--he's right--no easily accessible e-mail address on this blog. So sorry! I want to hear from you!

16 10, 2009


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Here is an info update on another new drug, Romidepsin, that one of our readers is already using. I first wrote about Romidepsin in August: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

15 10, 2009

There Is No One Right Answer – Only Alternatives!

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Dr. Jim O'Connor, an orthopedic surgeon from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, spoke at our Stillwater, Minnesota multiple myeloma support group today. He was diagnosed with multiple myeloma over five years ago. Before Dr. O'Connor was scheduled to speak, the group discussed a variety of therapy options, Dr. O'Connor listened for a number of minutes before volunteering

14 10, 2009

Please Don’t Hesitate To Contact Me!

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Whenever I send-out a copy of my book, Living with Multiple Myeloma, I include a note encouraging the purchaser to e-mail or call with any questions about myeloma or myeloma therapy. I tell them if I don't know the answers, I will try and find someone who does! It has been both humbling and gratifying

12 10, 2009

A Few More Thoughts About Total Therapy

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To review, Total Therapy is an aggressive approach to treating multiple myeloma. The key components are hitting the myeloma hard right away, before it has a chance to adapt, then slamming the myeloma twice by administering tandem stem cell transplants. The patient then undergoes up to three years of maintenance therapy after the second transplant,