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Don Baylor, long time hitting coach, continues fight against Multiple Myeloma

Previously, I mentioned that the field of hematology is an intellectually challenging and rewarding field. Being board-certified hematologists and oncologists, Dr Shaye, Dr Lashkari and I treat a variety of diseases of the blood. It would be difficult to list all the maladies that can affect the blood, since it is something we all take for granted. But patients who have trouble with bleeding, red blood cells or platelets disorders, and clotting know how complex blood and blood diseases can be.  

Multiple Myeloma is a disease in which much progress is being made. It can affect the blood, bone, kidneys, and immune system. Pioneering work was done by Dr. Robert Kyle of the Mayo Clinic, but doctors around the world are involved in the recent progression in our understanding and treatment of the disease. 

Myeloma is not a rare cancer, and has affected some public figures, raising awareness. Tom Brokaw, recently disclosed he has been diagnosed, and is tolerating treatment well, even working through the recent Winter Olympics in Sochi. This is a testament to the more recent treatments in which medication allow patients to live their lives normally. Another component of good myeloma care is the treatment for bone strength for which zoledronic acid is usually a foundation and a recommendation of the International Myeloma Working Group (IMWG)

The potential complications of myeloma affecting bone was recently highlighted at opening night of the Anaheim Angels. Although I do not know the details of Mr Baylor's disease and treatment, he has been a strong advocate for myeloma awareness after his diagnosis in 2000, and I wish him well in his recovery and continued treatment and fight against myeloma. He will likely do well after surgery and continued treatment. 

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Dr. Christopher Ho

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