In early March I joined a phase-2 trial (study) of Celgene's new IMiD drug CC-4047, with once-weekly dexamethasone. My two primARY markers, IgG and M-spike, are both down almost 50% after just two one-month cycles. This is an excellent response, especially since I stopped responding to thalidomide last year. Another patient that I know had an even better response on the same study, with markers dropping by half in just the first cycle. I have heard that other patients have done well too. CC-4047 is not a cure for myeloma, but it may become a very important tool in managing it and I suppose a lifesaver for some who have exhausted other options. I hope that Celgene will do whatever it takes to get it approved soon - people's lives are on the line.

CC-4047 side effects for me: No neuropathy, thromboses, leukopenia, neutropenia, or other difficult side effects yet, though these are all possible. Albumin seems low, but other liver markers are normal.

Dexamethasone side effects: Considering the good response and the dex side effects, Dr. L has changed the dex dosage from 40 mg to 20 mg once weekly. And the study continues, now well into the first week of the third cycle.

I'm lucky, or blessed, in so many ways. Most important, myeloma has not yet hurt me. Aside from painless lesions inside three bones, I have no symptoms from the disease itself, and symptoms from the treatment are quite modest thus far. I wish that all myeloma survivors were so lucky, or blessed. Thank you for your prayers, and I offer you mine.

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