Published: Sept. 9, 2011
Updated: Sept. 9, 2011
Multiple myeloma is a blood cancer that affects plasma cells, which are white blood cells that are produced from stem cells in bone marrow (the spongy tissue inside of bones).
In people with myeloma, plasma cells grow at an abnormal rate and are called myeloma cells. Myeloma cells restrict and impair the production of healthy blood cells in the bone marrow. The disease is called multiple myeloma because the cancer occurs at more than one site in the bones.
There is one main type of myeloma, but the cancerous plasma cells make different antibodies in different people. In each case, only one kind of immunoglobulin is overproduced, but the type varies from person to person.
Learn more about myelomas: