Treatment of Stage I Multiple Myeloma
Medically reviewed by Dr. C.H. Weaver M.D. Medical Editor (08/2018)
Stage I multiple myeloma occurs when there is a relatively small amount of cancer in the body.
The major decisions concerning treatment of stage I multiple myeloma are if and when treatment should be initiated. It may be useful to think of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS), smoldering multiple myeloma, and stage I multiple myeloma as a continuation or gradual progression of multiple myeloma. Patients with these conditions do not require immediate treatment, as these conditions may persist and be stable for several years. Patients should be followed at regular intervals by their physician, however, in order to detect clinical signs or symptoms that indicate myeloma progression.
Signs of progression and common reasons for initial treatment of myeloma include the following:
- A steady increase in the amount of serum or urine monoclonal or M-protein.
- Development of bone lesions.
- Worsening kidney function.
For a general discussion of the treatment options that exist for patients experiencing myeloma progression, proceed to the Treatment Overview of Stage II-III Multiple Myeloma.
 National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology™: Multiple Myeloma. V.1.2008. © National Comprehensive Cancer Network, Inc. 2005/2006. NCCN and NATIONAL COMPREHENSIVE CANCER NETWORK are registered trademarks of National Comprehensive Cancer Network, Inc.