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median life expectancy

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20 07, 2013

Groundbreaking news that was overlooked at ASCO 2013

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Before ASCO even got started the first week of June, our lifestyle columnist and my good friend, Danny Parker, alerted me to an incredibly important abstract that we both knew would get lost among all of the hype.  A retrospective study conducted by myeloma specialists at Mayo Clinic, it revealed some groundbreaking overall survival (OS)

29 12, 2012

Reality Check: How much longer might new therapies be expected to keep us alive?

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OK.  Let's get real.  Readers are asking, "How long will access to the new myeloma therapies featured at ASH help me live? Tricky question.  Answering is like trying to hit a moving target.  Complicating things are combination therapies.  Even after a new myeloma drug is approved, experts still won't know how combining the new drug

3 05, 2012

French researchers identify why some myeloma patients live longer

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Multiple myeloma researchers have spent the last decade trying to determine which patients are high risk and less likely to respond favorably to treatment. This report is encouraging.  It focuses on ways to identify patients who are likely to live LONGER than median life expectancy numbers would indicate. Mary Ann Moon does a good job

14 11, 2011

The truth about statistics: It’s all how you spin them…

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Yesterday I defined and attempted to explain the difference between "time to disease progression" and "median life expectancy." I illustrated how sometimes statistics don't make sense. The truth about statistics is it is all how you spin them.  I can take a bunch of  stats and make them look hopeful or discouraging. Writers, researchers--and especially

13 11, 2011

TIP: Understanding the difference between “time to disease progression” and “median life expectancy”

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Time to disease progression and median life expectancy are the two primary measurements used to evaluate how well a new anti-myeloma therapy is working. Time to disease progression refers to how long it takes for a patient's multiple myeloma to return after they start using a therapy. Median life expectancy measures how long a patient

8 05, 2011

Early Results Show Velcade Is Also Effective As A Maintenance Therapy Agent, Post SCT

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If you have been following news from this week's International Myeloma Workshop in Paris, you couldn't help but notice how the big news centered around a Revlimid maintenance therapy.  The focus wasn't on how Revlimd maintenance extended progression free survival.  The excitement was generated by statistics which showed an 8% increase in patient median life expectancy.Here

6 05, 2011

Does Paris Prove Maintenance Therapy–Post SCT–Is Worth The High Cost And Extra Side-Effects?

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OK, OK.  I know I was a bit negative late yesterday afternoon after posting what I felt were far from impressive, post stem cell transplant (SCT) news and numbers researchers have found using Revlimid as a maintenance drug.But seriously--this isn't exactly "bombshell" type news that will excite most of my readers.  An 8% improvement in overall survival after 28 months

2 02, 2011

Proof Using Velcade Or Revlimid Extends The Lives Of Multiple Myeloma Patients — Even Those With High Risk Disease

Tags: , , , |0 Comments featured important information yesterday about one of the first, credible studies which proves using new, novel therapy agents like Velcade and Revlimid significantly extends the lives of multiple myeloma patients.Here is a link back to that post:  The conclusion: Use of Velcade and/or Revlimid does increase median life expectancy. Feel good and keep smiling! 

3 11, 2010

Happy "43 Months & I’m Still Alive" Day!

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I'm celebrating today. The celebration isn't about sports or politics—or a birthday or anniversary.43 months ago today I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. 43 months. That was the median life expectancy for a multiple myeloma patient in April, 2007. I'm not cured—my cancer is still hanging around. But I'm alive and well and preparing to

19 10, 2010

Link To Hopeful Webinar About Living With Multiple Myeloma For A Long, Long Time

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Here is a link to a helpful, well produced webinar, featuring Nick Tiller and 16+ year multiple myeloma survivor Lt. Frank Cronin, about living with multiple myeloma and the efforts of the MMRF to cure this disease.Worth a look, especially for newly diagnosed patients and/or those who are "freaked out" multiple myeloma median life expectancy

18 05, 2010

Reflections From A Caregiver: "In this cancer community of survivors, how do we promote the power of positive thinking and not leave behind those who’s treatments are failing to impact the disease?"

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I have been e-mailing back and forth with a caregiver named Kate.  She originally contacted me about an article I wrote last week, An Ambiguous Multiple Myeloma Maintenance Therapy Study Is Still Worth A Look.  As I often do, I was commenting on one of the numerous research studies I often read.  Here is the

12 05, 2010

An Ambiguous Multiple Myeloma Maintenance Therapy Study Is Still Worth A Look

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Here is a research study abstract I found on, posted May 11, 2010:Maintenance with thalidomide improved PFS, not OS in multiple myeloma.Maintenance therapy with thalidomide extended PFS for patients with multiple myeloma, but such therapy did not result in a similar benefit for OS, according to results from a European study.From August 2001 to

5 02, 2010

My Commentary About Misleading Median Life Expectancy Statistics Among Multiple Myeloma Patients

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OK. I have stalled long enough. I have promised anecdotal evidence supporting longer life expectancies for multiple myeloma patients for the past three days—so here goes:I belong to two large multiple myeloma support groups. One in Stillwater, Minnesota and one in Minneapolis/St. Paul. I also travel often, speaking to support groups all around the country.

4 02, 2010

More About Median Life Expectancies Among Multiple Myeloma Patients – An Anecdotal Perspective

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Yesterday I wrote: “It is from this perspective I will share my anecdotal evidence and observations about the unreliable and inaccurate median life expectancy numbers most multiple myeloma patients face when they are diagnosed today.”So here it is: There are no numbers. No one likes to hear this—even though it is good—no—very good news! As