Tuesday, December 19, 2017
Multiple myeloma remains incurable despite improved remissions with novel agents. Relapse eventually occurs in the form of a drug-resistant disease that carries a dismal prognosis. Relapse is dependent on stem cell functions. We are talking to Dr. William Matsui of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine to get a better understanding of the drivers of these functions and how they may lead to novel therapies for relapsed disease.
Dec 20, 2 PM west Coast/5 PM east coast
Friday, December 15, 2017
My skeletal survey showed no bone damage from the osteoporosis. That's very good. Now we just strengthen the bones. Typically myeloma patients with bones issues get Zometa injections. But Zometa impacts the kidneys. So yesterday I got a shot of Prolia (similar too Xgeva). It's an injection in the belly every 6 months. It doesn't impact the kidneys and per both Phan and Berenson, it's perfect for a myeloma patient like me. This morning I woke with achiness. Apparently that's what Prolia does for a day or two. So it's doing it's job.
The targeted therapy Prolia (chemical name: denosumab) is approved by the U.S. FDA to treat postmenopausal women diagnosed with osteoporosis who are at high risk of breaking a bone or who can't take or haven't gotten any benefits from other osteoporosis treatments. Prolia is given as an injection under the skin once every 6 months.
The targeted therapy Xgeva (chemical name: denosumab) is approved by the U.S. FDA to reduce the risk of bone complications and bone pain caused by advanced-stage breast cancer that has spread to the bone. Xgeva is given as an injection under the skin every 4 weeks.
While Prolia and Xgeva are made of the same chemical components, each is used for a different purpose.
Like the bisphosphonates, Xgeva and Prolia can sometimes cause a rare but serious side effect, osteonecrosis of the jaw, a condition in which the cells in the jawbone start to die. Researchers think that osteonecrosis of the jaw may develop because bisphosphonates stop the body from repairing microscopic damage to the jawbone that can happen during routine dental procedures or from everyday wear and tear. But it's still not clear why this happens in some people and not in others. If you're taking Xgeva or Prolia, tell your dentist right away. Together, you and your dentist can work out a dental treatment schedule that keeps your teeth healthy and minimizes your risk of osteonecrosis of the jaw.
I recently met John, a fellow myeloma patient and advocate. He's involved in a program called Multiple Myeloma Journey Partners. Here...