Monday, February 21, 2011

This is Good News, but we want Great!

I stumbled across an article featuring Dr. Ken Andersen from Dana Farber (Thanks Myeloma Beacon!). He presents where he thinks treatment options are today for MM patients and ends with this:

“The median survival, especially in younger patients, is seven to eight years. Maintenance is adding at least another several years to that. So a newly diagnosed patient today has a likely median survival of over ten years.”

I am very happy to see an expert in the field raising the bar in terms of what a relatively healthy younger patient should expect in terms of median survival given the novel therapy that is in practice today.

The survival rate is trending in the right direction, but we need to continue to push for better outcomes.


Linda said...

Agreed! Wonder what constitutes "younger patients"?

chrismolinaro said...

I do not totally agree with his statement. I'm 32 in a CR since Nov and had my first SCT in Oct. I'm going for my 2nd SCT in 4 weeks. But I feel someone who is young and went into this with very few side effects cant be classified within the "7-8 years left of survival". This makes me not even want to read this stuff on the internet anymore.

Stephen Greene said...

I'm a patient of the Dana Farmer's MM team. I'm treated by Dr.Rob Schlossman and N.P. Kim Noonan who work with Dr. Anderson. I was diagnosed in 2002. I've had some aggressive treatment but I've been able to ride the 200 mile Pan Mass Challenge 5 of the last 8 years and I'm in training for the 2011 event.

I'm 62, I've been dominating for 8+ years and thanks to the treatment of my Doctors and Nurses at the DFCI, I have at least another 8 years in me.

"How ya like those apples???" (Matt Damon in Good Will Hunting)

Carol said...

I was happy to see the median survival time extended, but I want more!!! I'm 55 , young but feeling older from treatment. I also feel blessed there is treatment.

Carol said...
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peter said...

Hey, in 7 years my youngest one will be 8 and I will be 44. That's not an age where you want to leave. So I agree with Phil, that we have to fight harder for better outcomes. Not only talking, but doing something. As a sportsman, Phil, you know that we need a strategy and a scrum for performing well in the myeloma wars. But we now have a great coach in our exclusive club. Pat Williams has been diagnosed, one of the most impressive speakers in the U.S. Perhaps we could discuss strategy with him, when has recover form his first line treatment. I have in mind that influence in the pharma market starts with $10 million and more. Unfortunately. And change is needed at the FDA, sitting in Bethesda. We all know that this FDA-placebo-based studies are poison for the development of new agents. IMF and MMRF should do lobby work on this item. Do they?
So my question to you: how should we fight? What's our strategy, Phil? Peter

peter said...
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CancerKicker said...

Stephen- it's always great to hear from people who have been dominating M for more than a couple of years. You are an encouragement to all!

Chris- Fortunately Dr. Andersen was talking about the median survival. I am confident that the treatments people are undergoing today will provide longer term CRs and even cures.

Carol- I hear you! I am 30, but feel like 50 at times.

Peter- we need your enthusiasm in this race to outlive the disease. I love your attitude and ideas.

Linda- I had the same question.