Site logo

Understanding Multiple Myeloma: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment.


In 2018, Bishop Allan Kiuna of Jubilee Christian Center (JCC) was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, a type of blood cancer affecting plasma cells in the bone marrow. Despite undergoing chemotherapy and initially responding positively, Bishop Kiuna passed away after battling the disease.


What is Multiple Myeloma?

Multiple Myeloma is characterized by the abnormal growth of plasma cells, crucial components of the immune system that produce antibodies. In this cancer, these cells multiply uncontrollably, crowding out healthy blood cells in the bone marrow.


Causes of Multiple Myeloma

The exact cause remains unclear, but several factors increase the risk:

– Age: Most diagnoses occur in individuals over 65 years old.
– Gender: Men are slightly more likely to develop the disease than women.
– Race: African Americans have a higher risk compared to other racial groups.
– Family History: Having close relatives with blood cancers increases susceptibility.
– Obesity: Being overweight or obese is linked to a higher risk.
– Environmental Factors: Exposure to radiation or certain chemicals may contribute.


Signs and Symptoms of Multiple Myeloma

Symptoms can vary widely and may not be apparent in the early stages. Common indications as the disease progresses include:

– Bone Pain: Often affecting the back, ribs, and hips.
– Frequent Infections: Due to compromised immune function.
– Fatigue: Resulting from anemia and reduced red blood cell production.
– High Calcium Levels: Leading to nausea, constipation, and confusion.
– Kidney Problems: Caused by abnormal protein levels.
– Weight Loss: Often accompanied by loss of appetite.
– Numbness or Weakness: Nerve damage, particularly in the legs.


Diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma

Diagnosis involves multiple tests and procedures:

– Blood and Urine Tests: Detect abnormal protein levels and other markers.
– Bone Marrow Biopsy: Sample analysis to confirm the presence of myeloma cells.
– Imaging Tests: X-rays, MRI, CT scans, and PET scans to assess bone damage and tumor growth.


Treatment of Multiple Myeloma

Treatment strategies depend on disease stage, overall health, and individual factors:

– Medications: Including chemotherapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy, and steroids.
– Stem Cell Transplant: Replacing diseased bone marrow with healthy stem cells.
– Autologous Transplant: Using the patient’s own stem cells.
– Allogeneic Transplant: Using donor stem cells.
– Radiation Therapy: Targeted at specific areas to alleviate pain and reduce tumor size.
– Surgery: Occasionally used to remove localized masses of myeloma cells.
– Supportive Care: Managing symptoms with pain relief, antibiotics, and medications to strengthen bones.

Impact and Awareness: The story of Bishop Allan Kiuna highlights the challenges faced by individuals with Multiple Myeloma and underscores the importance of awareness, early detection, and ongoing research efforts.

This comprehensive overview aims to educate about Multiple Myeloma, providing insights into its causes, symptoms, diagnostic methods, and treatment options.


Article By Suzy Nyongesa.


  • No comments yet.
  • Add a comment