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Dr. Melissa Alsina

Home/Tag:Dr. Melissa Alsina
19 12, 2014

Patient Snapshot: David from Florida

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My former myeloma specialist, Dr. Melissa Alsina, is running an unusual clinical trial for newly diagnosed patients, featuring an auto stem cell transplant, followed by an allo (donor) transplant.  Tandem auto/allo transplants are considered experimental and risky, especially for new patients.  However, Dr. Alsina and her colleagues hope to have developed a way to help

8 05, 2014

Pat’s Medical Update: Stuck in no man’s land, but not for long!

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"You have stable disease."  Dr. Roy pronounced at our first visit at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville.  If only it were that simple! The last week was crazy busy with medical appointments and tests.  I saw three specialists: Dr. Vivek Roy, a hematologist recommended by Dr. Angela Dispenzieri and my good friend, oncology and transplant nurse

24 03, 2014

Relapse review: What should Pat do next?

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I hadn't planned to write a follow up post about me today.  But I can tell from the flood of emails and comments I've been getting that some readers are concerned  I'm sitting back and not doing enough to battle my relapse. And there does seem to be some confusion about my treatment plan moving

31 10, 2013

When it comes to myeloma, two heads are better than one!

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I met with my medical oncologist, Dr. Vikas Malhotra, for the first time since last month's relapse today.  He reviewed my test results, including the MRI of my left hip.  It reminded me why working together as a team is so important. I felt that Dr. Malhotra and his physicians assistant, Ann, made some innovative

21 09, 2013

Dangers of donor transplants for myeloma patients explained

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A few months back I had an opportunity to interview transplant and myeloma specialist, Dr. Ravi Vij on a Cure Talk broadcast.  The topic, Pros and cons of using allogeneic (donor) transplants against multiple myeloma.   I asked a number of questions about this procedure that is now discouraged for myeloma patients in most transplant

16 07, 2013

My new hip is healed. Not sure I can say the same emotionally…

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I had an early appointment with the specialist that performed my hip replacement surgery this morning, so I'm late getting back to you. That's not all I had going this am.  I also stepped across the street from Moffitt Cancer Center's main clinic building to visit the psych department.  I'm serious about following-up and seeking

27 05, 2013

High risk myeloma patients: Would you like the good or bad news first?

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Depending on which myeloma expert you ask, roughly 85% of multiple myeloma patients are considered to be "standard" or "low risk."  I'm fortunate to fall into this most common category.  And because I do--and so many other patients do, too--I tend to write most about us.  But what about high risk patients? Ironically, two or

27 03, 2013

If not Velcade, what next? How about oprozomib?

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I was happy to delay Monday's ongoing conversation a day in honor of myeloma hero, Elijah Alexander.  Let's jump-start things today using Dr. Alsina's own words:  “Now would be a good time to do this.”  She said.  “Your myeloma is stable.  I would do it now.” She was referring to my queries about re-visiting the