Multiple Myeloma Overview

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Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging TOPICS

Survival rates by stage for multiple myeloma

Some people with cancer may want to know the survival rates for their type of cancer. Others may not find the numbers helpful, or may even not want to know them. If you decide that you don’t want to know them, stop reading here and skip to the next section.

The numbers below are from the International Staging System stages. These times are measured from the point that treatment (most often chemotherapy) first started. Median survival refers to the time it took for half of the patients to die. So half the patients lived longer than the median survival.

Many patients, such as those with or smoldering myeloma, have a good deal of time after the cancer is found before treatment is started.

International Staging System stage

Median survival

Stage I

62 months

Stage II

44 months

Stage III

29 months

These rates are based on people first treated 5 to 25 years ago. Recent improvements in treatment often mean a better outlook for people today.

These numbers give an overall picture, but keep in mind that every person is unique and statistics can’t predict exactly what will happen in your case. Talk with your cancer care team if you have questions about your own chances of a cure, or how long you might survive your cancer. They know your situation best.


Last Medical Review: 02/01/2013
Last Revised: 02/13/2013