Basic Information: Definition

Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer formed by mclassant B-lymphocytes, their clonal proliferation and accumulation of terminal stages-plasmocytes (myeloma cells).  These myeloma cells form monoclonal immunoglobulin and other cytokines that result in various symptomps of different intensity. Multiple myeloma is frequently associated with osteolysis, renal dysfunctions and anemia. Multiple myeloma is a clinical entity that corresponds, according to WHO (2001), to a morphological entity called plasma cell myeloma, see table 1.

Table 1:  Clinical terms of mclassant monoclonal gammopathy and the corresponding histologic entities according to the WHO classification

Clinical syndrome, clinical entity Histologic entity according to  WHO classification  (2001)
Multiple myeloma Plasma cell myeloma
Immunoglobulin deposition disease
Primary AL-amyloidosis
Light chain deposition disease
Plasma cell myeloma
Polyneuropathy, Organomegaly,
Endocrine abnormalities, Monoclonal gammopathy,
Skin changes
Osteosclerotic myeloma,
Multicentric Castleman´s disease
Waldenström's macroglobulinemia Lymphoplasmocytic lymphoma
Heavy chain disease
Gamma haevy chain disease
Alfa heavy chain disease
Lymphoplasmocytic lymphoma
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia
Mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT)