At any one time there are around 17,500 people living with myeloma in the UK. It accounts for 15 per cent of blood cancers, and two per cent of all cancers.
Myeloma is a type of cancer that develops from cells in the bone marrow called plasma cells. Bone marrow is the spongy tissue found inside the inner part of some of our large bones. The bone marrow produces different types of blood cells.
Myeloma can develop wherever there are plasma cells. So it can be anywhere there is bone marrow, including the pelvis, spine and ribcage. As it can occur in several places in the body, it is often called multiple myeloma. Although this type of cancer is treatable, there is currently no cure for this type of cancer.
In 2018 North Bristol NHS Trust was presented with the Myeloma UK Clinical Service Excellence Programme Award (Myeloma UK CSEP), in recognition of our commitment to providing outstanding treatment and care to our patients and our families. The award programme was established in 2015 to recognise when superior care is given to myeloma patients, share best practice initiatives and to benchmark optimum standards in myeloma treatment.
Fighting cancer through research
Pioneering work into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer has helped save millions of lives. Over the past 40 years survival has doubled, thanks to the great progress research has made. At North Bristol NHS Trust we diagnose over 3,000 new cases of cancer and treat approximately 5000 new and recurrent cancers each year, making us one of largest cancer centres in the South West.
Stephen has been fighting myeloma for over 10 years and has taken part in two clinical drug trials.
Stephen took part in two clinical trials here at North Bristol NHS Trust.
“I had no hesitation in taking part in the drug trials. I looked at it in two ways.
1) You would be helping me and
2) I would be helping you so it would be hopefully a win win situation. The drugs they were trialling seemed to be working which made me feel a lot easier about living with my cancer”.
You can read more about the trials here: A trial comparing treatments for myeloma (MRC Myeloma IX)
Myeloma X trial shows benefit of second transplant in relapsed myeloma patients