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Sydney 2005:
Prevalence, Pathogenesis & Treatment of Anemia with Erythropoetic Agents in MM
By Heinz Ludwig, MD
Dr. Heinz Ludwig discussed the prevalence, pathogenesis, and treatment of anemia with erythropoietic agents. Anemia is a common complication with MM and has a higher prevalence in MM than in patients with solid tumors. He stated the main goal of the European Cancer Anemia Survey (EACS) is to analyze the prevalence of anemia, the incidence of anemia, the impact of age, identify predictors of anemia, and treatment options. Dr. Ludwig indicated that age is an important factor to consider with anemia and in a recent study with elderly patients, whose median age was 68 years, the prevalence of anemia was 72%. Dr. Ludwig recommended that treatment options should be based on the patient’s individual symptoms and less on hemoglobin levels and symptomatology. Erythropoietic agents, transfusion, and iron supplements may be considered as treatment options. The benefits of erythropoietic treatment agents include an increased appetite, improved cognitive function, and improved quality of life, while reducing dependency on transfusions.

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