We are international

Interest is high in our disease

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ASH officially begins tomorrow (Saturday) but there were excellent pre-ASH lectures today. Interest is high in our disease and the rooms were full of people from all around the world, many conversing in languages I don't understand. The topic everyone was interested in was the progress we are making in myeloma treatment. Paul Richardson put those advances in excellent perspective when he commented that in the last decade there have been 8 FDA approvals for myeloma treatment. Prior to that there had been no new myeloma drugs approved for 30 years, but as he said, "we still have a long way to go". 

Regarding whether the novel drugs will replace transplants, he felt that they will not replace the procedure, but will serve to enhance it. There seemed to be near uniformity among all the speakers about the value of three-drug combinations....not two (less efficacy), and not four (too much toxicity), but three. 

Hakan Kaya from the Univ of Washington made a very interesting comment regarding allo transplants, considering that he is a transplant specialist. He feels that myeloma will be curable within the next ten years and is opposed to doing allos for myeloma patients because of the high toxicity, including mortality. He said it would be a tragic loss for these patients to die, "who might have lived long enough to be cured."  It is so nice to hear "cure" and myeloma spoken together in the same sentence!  We ARE getting closer.


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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Jim Omel published on December 7, 2012 5:41 PM.

Dec 7, 2012- ASH Day "0" was the previous entry in this blog.

I like these IMF yearly symposiums because they allow doctors to have a civilized sparring of ideas is the next entry in this blog.

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