Patient Power: Is Maintenance Therapy Necessary for MRD Negative Patients?
When a multiple myeloma patient achieves a negative MRD test, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the patient is cured, but it does mean that the most sensitive testing available does not detect myeloma--which is a very good thing.
Dr. Gareth Morgan from the UAMS Myeloma Institute noted that this stage is “a very good endpoint…but, it’s not an endpoint that says ‘stop treatment’.”
Several studies, including the ixazomib maintenance data, have shown that even with an MRD negative test, receiving maintenance therapy approves a patient’s outcome even further.
"We have to be thinking about patients' quality of life, durability of on-going therapy, total cost--but actually, I think within the cost envelope we have now, I think there's a lot of room for maneuver that really is going to see patients patent that progression for an overall survival pushed out, so very good numbers." -Dr. Morgan.