The field of multiple myeloma prognostication is replete with studies that have shown the value of independent predictors in determining clinical outcome. It is clear that host factors and factors intrinsic to the cells are the ultimate determinants of prognosis. In the immediate period after diagnosis, those factors related to the host are likely to be more relevant, whereas with passing time factors intrinsic to the cells predominate. At a minimum, we recommend that a comprehensive molecular cytogenetic assessment be performed at diagnosis, together with conventional evaluation, including β2-microglobulin and albumin. In addition, information on proliferative activity of plasma cells may be of value. The introduction of novel methods of prognostication should be strongly considered in all clinical trials.
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