Multiple Myeloma

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Risk Factors – Race and Ethnicity in Multiple Myeloma

Dr. Jens Hillengass Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center

Multiple myeloma is commonly considered one of the rarer cancers. There were 12 times fewer cases than lung cancer in 2018. However, risk can vary widely based on several factors, especially race and ethnicity:

  • Asians: 1 in 30,000 individuals develop the disease
  • Caucasians: 1 in 20,000 individuals develop the disease
  • African Americans: most at risk of developing multiple myeloma; approximately 1 in 7,000 individuals develop the disease

Additional risk factors include age and gender with males at a slightly greater risk than females, as well as the presence of precursor diseases. African Americans are at an increased risk of developing multiple myeloma because they have higher rates of conditions that can lead to myeloma.


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Dr. Jens Hillengass is the Chief of Myeloma and a Professor of Oncology at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. Read More

Introduction to Multiple Myeloma

SurvivorNet has assembled some of the country’s leading experts to help you understand multiple myeloma and make decisions about your care.