POEMS syndrome

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Abstract

POEMS syndrome is a rare paraneoplastic syndrome secondary to a plasma cell dyscrasia. Recognition of the complex of a combination of peripheral neuropathy, organomegaly, endocrinopathy, monoclonal plasmaproliferative disorder, skin changes, papilledema, extravascular volume overload (peripheral edema, pleural effusions, ascites), sclerotic bone lesions, thrombocytosis, Castleman disease is the first step in effectively managing the disease. A rise in the blood levels of vascular endothelial growth factor is usually confirmatory. More than 95% of patients will have monoclonal lambda sclerotic plasmacytoma(s) or bone marrow infiltration. In patients with a dominant sclerotic plasmacytoma, first line therapy should include radiation to the lesion. Retrospective analysis and personal experience would dictate that systemic therapy be considered for patients with diffuse sclerotic lesions or absence of any bone lesion and for those who have not demonstrated stabilization of their disease 3 to 6 months after completing radiation therapy. For those patients with diffuse disease, systemic therapy is indicated. Useful approaches include therapy with corticosteroids, low dose alkylator therapy, and high dose chemotherapy with peripheral blood stem cell transplant. Until the pathogenesis is fully understood, these are the mainstays of treatment for patients with POEMS syndrome. The role of anti-VEGF therapies, immune modulatory drugs, and proteasome inhibitors has not yet been defined, but drugs with known high rates of treatment related neuropathy should not be considered as first line therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-299
Number of pages15
JournalBlood Reviews
Volume21
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2007

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POEMS Syndrome
Plasmacytoma
Therapeutics
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
Giant Lymph Node Hyperplasia
Paraneoplastic Syndromes
Bone and Bones
Thrombocytosis
Papilledema
Paraproteinemias
Proteasome Inhibitors
Alkylating Agents
Peripheral Nervous System Diseases
Pleural Effusion
Ascites
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Edema
Adrenal Cortex Hormones
Radiotherapy
Bone Marrow

Keywords

  • Castleman's Disease
  • Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Paraneoplastic syndrome
  • POEMS syndrome
  • Vascular endothelial growth factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Hematology
  • Oncology

Cite this

POEMS syndrome. / Dispenzieri, Angela.

In: Blood Reviews, Vol. 21, No. 6, 11.2007, p. 285-299.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Dispenzieri, Angela. / POEMS syndrome. In: Blood Reviews. 2007 ; Vol. 21, No. 6. pp. 285-299.
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