My 78 year old mother has had multiple myeloma for 5 years

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My 78 year old mother has had multiple myeloma for 5 years

Question from Ron

My 78 year old mother has had multiple myeloma for 5 years and it has been under control until recently. She had pain in her upper back and down her left arm and an MRI showed that she has a small (14mm) tumor pressing on her spinal cord in the C-2 region. What is the best way to take care of this tumor? Surgery or Gamma Knife?

Dear Ron,

Your mother has a difficult problem. Usually, multiple myeloma is treated with chemotherapy and other medications. Focal radiation therapy may also be of use in treating her C2 spinal cord tumor. At the University of Virginia, we perform spinal radiosurgery using Tomotherapy. This is a radiation device coupled to a CT scanner. Such an approach would likely be the most appropriate for your mother.

Please contact me with any more specific questions.

Sincerely,

Jason Sheehan