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Multiple Myeloma

Symptoms

In some cases, multiple myeloma does not cause any symptoms. However, if symptoms are present they can include:
 
  • Bone pain, often in the back or ribs
  • Bones that break easily
  • Fever for no known reason (or frequent infections)
  • Easy bruising or bleeding
  • Trouble breathing
  • Weakness of the arms or legs
  • Feeling very tired
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Feeling thirsty
  • Frequent urination
  • Constipation
  • Muscle weakness
  • Restlessness
  • Mental confusion or trouble thinking.
 
These symptoms are not sure signs of multiple myeloma. Other, less serious health problems can also cause these symptoms. People with possible symptoms of multiple myeloma should see a doctor as soon as possible -- only a doctor can diagnose and treat the problem.

(Click Symptoms of Multiple Myeloma for more information.)
 

Making a Diagnosis

In some cases, multiple myeloma will be diagnosed based on a routine blood test after an x-ray for a broken bone. However, in most cases, it will be diagnosed after a patient goes to his or her healthcare provider for relief of other symptoms of the disease. If a person has possible multiple myeloma symptoms, the healthcare provider will likely need to perform a physical exam and ask about the patient's personal and family medical history. In order to make a diagnosis, the healthcare provider will usually also recommend additional tests and procedures.
 
Exams and tests that are used to make a diagnosis of multiple myeloma may include:
 
  • Blood tests
  • Urine tests
  • X-rays
  • Biopsy.
 
(Click Multiple Myeloma Diagnosis for more information about diagnosing this condition.)
 
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