What is the prevalence of multiple myeloma (MM)?

Updated: May 11, 2021
  • Author: Dhaval Shah, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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MM accounts for 10% of all hematologic cancers. [19, 20]  The American Cancer Society estimates that in the United States, approximately 34,920 new cases of MM (19,320 in men and 15,600 in women) will be diagnosed in 2021. [15] The lifetime risk of getting MM is approximately one in 125 (0.8%). [21] Approximately 12,410 deaths from MM (6,840 in men and 5,570 in women) are expected to occur in 2021. [15]  Rates for new MM cases have not changed significantly over the last decade, remaining in the range of 6.7 per 100,000 persons since 2010, while death rates declined slightly, from 3.4 to 3.1 per 100,000 from 2008 to 2018. [21]

In the US, the annual incidence of MM per 100,000 persons is 8.2 cases in white men, 5.0 cases in white women, 16.5 cases in black men, and 12.0 cases in black women. For Hispanics, the rates are 8.2 in men and 5.7 in women. Rates are lowest for Asians/Pacific Islanders, at 5.0 in men and 3.2 in women. [21]  According to a study of the ethnic disparities among patients with MM, Hispanics had the youngest median age at diagnosis (65 years) and whites had the oldest (71 years). Asians had the best overall survival rates, while Hispanics had the worst. [22]

The median age at diagnosis of MM is 69 years. Less than 14% of patients are younger than 55 years, and only about 3% [21] are younger than 45 years.

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