Question: Can your blood type also help you get this terrible disease?

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  1. Thanks for your question lulu.

    No, multiple myeloma doesn’t have anything to do with a person’s blood type.

    No one knows for sure how myeloma starts, but basically, it occurs when a type of white blood cell becomes diseased but continues to survive in the person’s body, and continues to produce other diseased cells. Eventually these diseased cells overtake a person’s bone marrow, and cause the person to get sick.



  1. Thankyou for the answer Cindy.
    So will this effect all of the blood cells in the bone marrow?


  2. Are you on your way to find out how it starts because I am interested by the way what happens to you when you get it?


  3. Great follow up question lulu.

    No, not all of the blood cells in the bone marrow will be affected. Multiple myeloma is when a specific type of white blood cell becomes disease. This cell is called a Plasma cell. Normally it plays an important role in your immune system. Other immune cells (such as T-cells and B-cells) won’t be affected; your red blood cells will also remain unaffected.

    Normally a person’s bone marrow is important for generating new immune cells. But if multiple myeloma carries on for a long time, the diseased plasma cells will eventually take over most of the person’s bone marrow, which means it can’t produce the other normal healthy cells, so the person’s immune system can’t function properly and they can easily succumb to infections.


    • Thanks Cindy. Do lots if people get multiple melenoma


      • You’re welcome 🙂

        Multiple myeloma is the second most common blood cancer in the world, and about 1200 new cases are diagnosed in Australia every year. In 2012 in the US, 21,000 new cases were diagnosed. Although that might not seem like a lot, multiple myeloma is mainly a disease of the elderly, most patients are aged 65 or older. It represents approximately 1% of all cancers.


  4. Also a good follow up question ally11 🙂

    It’s difficult to find out exactly what causes multiple myeloma because it can be different in different people. Scientists have made some progress in understanding how certain changes in DNA can cause plasma cells to become cancerous. They have also identified some gene mutations that can mean a person might be more likely to get multiple myeloma. But because every human is different, these things are true for most patients, but there are always exceptions.

    When a person has multiple myeloma, blood tests are performed to measure the levels of certain proteins. Doctors will also perform cell counts (to calculate the number of certain types of immune cells to measure the health of the patient’s immune system). In severe cases, patients can get fractures in their bones or holes in their bones. If you’ve ever seen an extra, you’ll know that bones appear white on the black x-ray film. If a patient has holes in their bones from MM, dark spots can be seen in the white parts of the x-ray. Other symptoms also include increases in infections and tiredness. Unfortunately a lot of the symptoms for MM can be nonspecific (unlike some other cancers, there aren’t any lumps that you can see/feel), which makes it a bit harder to diagnose (than other cancers).