How Can Myeloma Patients Facing Disparities Be More Proactive in Their Care?

Dr. Victoria Vardell of the Huntsman Cancer Institute of Utah discusses her study where key findings reveal Black patients are less likely to receive a stem cell transplant (SCT) and encourages patients to ask questions of their providers until they have a complete understanding.

ASH2019, Victoria Vardell MD, Black myeloma patients, SCT, Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Diverse Health Hub

About this expert

Victoria Vardell, MD

Division of Hematology and Hematologic Malignancies

Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah


Dr. Victoria Vardell:
Multiple Myeloma is as an interesting disease in that it is much more likely to impact Black patients, which is one reason it's interesting to find that Black patients are less likely to receive stem cell transplants and other upfront therapies that are highly recommended. 

Dr. Victoria Vardell:
One of the best things that patients can do is always ask questions. It's easy as physicians to think that someone is understanding what you're saying or understanding what you've known for years, but Multiple Myeloma and many cancers are very confusing and complex diseases. And the therapies are becoming more and more complex as well, so patients can benefit a lot from asking questions, not being afraid to ask them multiple times until they are fully understanding it. And also finding out what resources are available. At many of these large cancer institutes, the resources available for patients are very large, we are always very happy to educate our patients and that's the best way that they can make educated decisions going forward in their treatment.


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