Multiple Myeloma Survival Rate
The multiple myeloma survival rate expresses the percentage of people who survive the disease for a specific time period after their diagnosis. In most cases, statistics concerning multiple myeloma refer to the five-year survival rate. The survival rates discussed in the following article refer to the relative survival rate, which measures the survival of multiple myeloma patients in comparison to the general population.
Multiple Myeloma Survival Rate: An Introduction
The multiple myeloma survival rate indicates the percentage of people who survive the disease for a specific period of time after their diagnosis. In most cases, statistics refer to the five-year multiple myeloma survival rate. The five-year multiple myeloma survival rate is the percentage of people who are alive five years after a multiple myeloma diagnosis, whether they have few or no signs or symptoms of multiple myeloma, are free of disease, or are receiving treatment for the cancer. The multiple myeloma survival rate is based on large groups of people; it cannot be used to predict what will happen to a particular patient. No two patients are exactly alike, and multiple myeloma treatment and responses to treatment vary greatly.
Factors That Affect the Multiple Myeloma Survival Rate
In general, the multiple myeloma survival rate will depend on:
- The stage of multiple myeloma (see Multiple Myeloma Stage)
- Whether a certain immunoglobulin (antibody) is present
- Whether the kidney is damaged
- Whether the cancer responds to initial treatment or comes back
- The patient's age and general health.
Overall Multiple Myeloma Survival Rates
Survival rates can be calculated by different methods for different purposes. The multiple myeloma survival rates presented here are based on the relative survival rate. The relative survival rate measures the survival of multiple myeloma patients in comparison to the general population to estimate the effect of cancer. The overall five-year relative multiple myeloma survival rate for 1995-2001 was 32.4 percent.
The five-year relative multiple myeloma survival rates by race and sex were:
- 35.8 percent for Caucasian men
- 28.1 percent for Caucasian women
- 36.3 percent for African American men
- 30.5 percent for African American women.
(Click Multiple Myeloma Statistics for more statistics on multiple myeloma.)