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Multiple Myeloma in African Americans Overview

Multiple myeloma is the most common blood cancer in African Americans1

Multiple myeloma is one of the malignancies with the greatest disparity in incidence and prevalence between African Americans and Whites.4,5 As a result, there is also a disparity in improvement of survival for African Americans with multiple myeloma.5 Overall, African Americans have benefited less from improvements in survival compared with Whites. 5

Some of the reasons include:

  • African Americans are underrepresented in clinical trials1

  • African Americans experience disparities in receiving stem cell transplant for multiple myeloma1

  • African Americans are less likely to receive certain combination therapies6

When receiving the same treatment, African Americans have similar outcomes to Whites5,7

References: 1. Pierre A, et al. Clin J Oncol Nurs. 2020;24(4):439-443. 2. US Census Bureau Quick Facts. www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/PST045219. Accessed October 19, 2021. 3. Howlader N, et al. SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2017. National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD. https://seer.cancer.gov/csr/1975_2017/, based on November 2019 SEER data submission, posted to the SEER website, April 2020. 4. American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts and Figures for African Americans 2019-2021. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2019. https://www.cancer.org/content/dam/cancer-org/research/cancer-facts-and-statistics/cancer-facts-and-figures-for-african-americans/cancer-facts-and-figures-for-african-americans-2019-2021.pdf. Accessed October 19, 2021. 5. Marinac CR, et al. Blood Cancer J. 2020;10:19. 6. Derman BA, et al. Blood Cancer J. 2020;10:80. 7. Ailawadhi S, et al. Blood Cancer J. 2018;8:67-75.

Related information

Multiple Myeloma Epidemiology in African Americans

Find out how multiple myeloma affects the African American community.

Disparities in Care and Outcomes

Understand how African Americans have benefited less from treatment improvements compared to White patients.

Understanding Barriers

Read about the interrelated factors that lead to disparities in care.


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