As a 16-year survivor of multiple myeloma, when I was given the opportunity to attend the May 3-6, 2011 International Myeloma Workshop in Paris and blog about it from a patient's perspective, I said "absolutely."
After all, the ASH (American Society of Hematology) conference was only five months ago, but so much has happened since then. I'm looking forward to passing along that news to you in this blog.
For example, one of the studies the IMF is excited about shows overall survival on maintenance for the right myeloma patients. Other news we'll be hearing from presenters in Paris are updated results from trials using Carfilzomib, Pomalidomide and many more drugs.
A bit of background about me: Sixteen years ago, I was diagnosed with Stage 3 multiple myeloma. In 1998, I had a full allo transplant using my sister's stem cells. While I battled graft-versus-host disease and had three plasmacytomas radiated during the next two-to-three years, I've been in a complete remission with no treatment for the last eight years.
However, I believe that one day my myeloma will return. While I'm not medically trained, I've stayed in close contact with the myeloma community and seen amazing research and treatment results over the last 10 years.
I've been fortunate enough to have attended the last five ASH conferences and shared results with our S.F. Bay Area myeloma support group and others around the country.
The Paris presentations, according to the agenda, will start before 8 a.m. and continue until at least 7 p.m. I am excited to share what I learn from this jam-packed event with you!