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Definition of MULTIPLE MYELOMA
: a disease of bone marrow that is characterized by the presence of numerous myelomas in various bones of the body
First Known Use of MULTIPLE MYELOMA
Medical Definition of MULTIPLE MYELOMA
: a disease of bone marrow that is characterized by the presence of numerous myelomas in various bones of the body—called also myelomatosis
A malignant proliferation of abnormal plasma cells that populate the marrow-containing bones of the body. The affected plasma cells produce myeloma protein, a monoclonal antibody that replaces normal antibodies in the blood, thereby increasing susceptibility to infection and renal failure. Symptoms include pain, anemia, weakness, infection, a tendency to hemorrhage, shortness of breath, kidney insufficiency, bone fractures, and neurological symptoms. It is considered a progressive and incurable disease; treatments with thalidomide, bone-marrow transplantation, and high-dose chemotherapy may extend life span, although success rates are variable.