What are the treatment goals for maintenance therapy in myeloma?

FAQ Library published on April 17, 2013 in Maintenance Therapy
Download Transcript Download Audio
Adam D. Cohen, MD
Director, Myeloma Immunotherapy
Assistant Professor, Hematology/Oncology Division
Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

My name is Adam Cohen, and I am an assistant professor in medical oncology at the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. I am often asked what are the treatment goals for maintenance therapy in myeloma? What is clear now from several studies is that maintenance therapy with either thalidomide, lenalidomide, or bortezomib can improve the depth of response, the duration of response, and progression-free survival compared with just stopping therapy at the end of induction. Our hope is that this will translate into an overall survival advantage; however, the data so far appear mixed with some studies demonstrating a survival advantage and other studies not, and we await longer follow up for these studies. It is important to remember of course that none of these therapies are curative, and therefore, patients need to be monitored closely for toxicity so that the benefits of maintenance therapy are not outweighed by significant comprise of quality of life.

 

Reference

Ludwig H, et al. IMWG Consensus on Maintenance Therapy in Multiple Myeloma. Blood. 2012;19(13):3003-3015.

Reviewed on January 17, 2017 for clinical relevance.

Last modified: February 8, 2017
Related Items by Category
How can we reduce the risk of maintenance therapy-associated side effects?
FAQ Library published on April 19, 2012 in Maintenance Therapy
When considering bortezomib- or lenalidomide-based maintenance therapy, what should I discuss with my patients?
FAQ Library published on March 23, 2012 in Maintenance Therapy
Related Items by Author
What are the safety concerns moving forward with CAR-T cell therapy in multiple myeloma?
Adam D. Cohen, MD
FAQ Library published on March 28, 2018
CAR-T cell therapy and what to look for in 2018
Adam D. Cohen, MD
FAQ Library published on January 17, 2018