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Prashant Kapoor, MD, FACP


Black Women’s Health Study: Identifying Risk Factors for Multiple Myeloma

By: Joshua D. Madera, MD
Posted: Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Although risk factors for the development of multiple myeloma have been established, there is limited evidence in Black populations. Efforts to identify risk factors in this group have confirmed a positive association between an increased body mass index (BMI) in early adulthood and an increased risk of multiple myeloma in Black women, according to a study published in the British Journal of Cancer. These findings suggest that early intervention with weight control may be employed as a preventive strategy to reduce the risk of multiple myeloma, explained Kimberly A. Bertrand, ScD, MPH, of Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine, and colleagues.

The study encompassed a total of 292 women who were diagnosed with multiple myeloma since 1995. All patients were recruited from the Black Women’s Health Study. Clinical data including the usual BMI, BMI at age 18, waist-to-hip ratio, and height were collected from patients.

Analysis of usual BMI revealed an increased risk of developing multiple myeloma in patients with a BMI ≥ 35 kg/m2 compared with those with a BMI ≤ 25 kg/m2 (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.38). In addition, an early adult BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2 was found to be associated with an increased risk of developing multiple myeloma (HR = 1.57). The highest risk of developing multiple myeloma was identified in patients who had an increased BMI during early adulthood and later in life (HR = 1.60). Furthermore, a positive association between height and the risk of multiple myeloma was identified (HR per 10 cm = 1.21).

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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