The exact cause of multiple myeloma is not known and no avoidable risk factors have been found. However, certain things appear to make you more likely to develop multiple myeloma.
- Age: Over 65
- Gender: Men are slightly more likely to develop multiple myeloma
- Race: African Americans are twice as likely as white Americans to develop multiple myeloma
- Radiation exposure
- Other plasma cell diseases: If you have had one of the following you are at higher risk:
- A precancerous condition called monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS)
- A single tumor of plasma cells (solitary plasmacytoma)
Not everyone with risk factors gets multiple myeloma. However, if you have risk factors, it’s a good idea to discuss them with your doctor.