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21

NCCN Guidelines for Patients

®

:

Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia, Version 1.2017

2

Testing for WM

Review

Staging WM

Staging is the process of rating and describing the

extent of cancer in your body. There is no standard

staging system (such as Stage I, II, III, etc.) for

WM like there is for other cancer types. This is also

true for other blood cancers that may not form solid

tumors.

Doctors use the International Prognostic Scoring

System for WM. This system uses specific factors

seen with WM. The factors help group people with

WM into high risk, intermediate (middle) risk, and low

risk. These factors are considered for prognosis.

The factors include:

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Age- 65 years or older

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Hemoglobin level 11.5 g/dL or less

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Platelet count 100,000/mcL or less

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Beta-2 microglobulin more than 3 mg/L

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IgM level more than 7 g/dL

For people with WM, the high-risk group has more

than 2 factors. Intermediate risk is people 65 years

or older and those who have two factors. The low-

risk group has no factor or those people older than

65 who have 1 factor. The doctor considers the level

of risk at diagnosis. More information from research

is needed when using the system for treatment

decisions.

Review

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Two basic tools of diagnosis are when your

doctor takes your medical history and does an

exam of your body.

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Blood tests give the doctor information to plan

the next steps for other testing or treatment.

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If WM or another similar disease is suspected,

your blood will be tested for certain levels of

immunoglobulins.

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Tissue or fluid must be removed from your body

and tested to diagnose cancer.

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Your age, overall health including other medical

conditions, and symptoms play a part in

whether you get treatment or not for WM.

What to know about

testing...

ü

Your doctors will order tests and

schedule visits to talk about your care

plan. This happens whether you are being

watched for symptoms of WM or getting

treatment.

ü

It is helpful to keep track of your test

results at all times. Ask your doctors

questions about the results.