Management of multiple myeloma in the newly diagnosed patient
Mateos MV (1), San Miguel JF (2).
Multiple myeloma is the second most frequent hematological disease. The introduction of melphalan as high-dose therapy followed by autologous hematopoietic cell transplantation (HDT/ASCT) for young patients and the availability of novel agents for young and elderly patients with multiple myeloma have dramatically changed the perspective of treatment.
However, further research is necessary if we want definitively to cure the disease. Treatment goals for transplant-eligible and non-transplant-eligible patients should be to prolong survival by achieving the best possible response while ensuring quality of life.
For young patients, HDT-ASCT is a standard of care for treatment, and its efficacy has been enhanced and challenged by the new drugs. For elderly patients, treatment options were once limited to alkylators, but new upfront treatment combinations based on novel agents (proteasome inhibitors and immunomodulatory drugs) combined or not with alkylators have significantly improved outcomes.
Extended treatment of young and elderly patients improves the quality and duration of clinical responses; however, the optimal scheme, appropriate doses, and duration of long-term therapy have not yet been fully determined.
This review summarizes progress in the treatment of patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma, addressing critical questions such as the optimal induction, early vs late ASCT, consolidation and/or maintenance for young patients, and how we can choose the best treatment option for non-transplant-eligible patients.