According to the National Cancer Institute (INCa), “Multiple myeloma is a pernicious blood disorder or cancer of the blood. It is characterized by an overproduction in the bone marrow of a type of white blood cell called a plasma cell, which has become abnormal.” Several symptoms are associated with the disease, such as anemia. Blood, bone events or kidney failure In addition, multiple myeloma is characterized by many relapses and a source of concern for patients and relatives.
On the positive side, over the past ten years, therapeutic innovations have made it possible to improve survival without disease progression, allowing patients to drop themselves into new life projects. They benefit from improved care, with an exponentially improved path of care. For example, Limoges University Hospital has established Home Hospitalization (HAD). Dr Mohamed Touati, a hematologist, returns to this project and explains its reasons.
Why did you decide to publish HAD?
“The management of multiple myeloma has evolved with the arrival of new, high-performance molecules. The average survival, which 3 years ago was 10-15 years, is now nearly 10 years. The disease becomes chronic, thus imposing more frequent and longer treatment protocols. For this,” The reason is in 2009, in order to relieve congestion in the hospital and improve the quality of life of patients, we created HAD. ”
Concretely, how is it going?
“We have developed procedures to implement a regional device that makes it possible to prepare chemotherapy treatments in a hospital pharmacy, send them to the patient’s home, and administer these particles thanks to a nurse from HAD or a liberal nurse. So we provide alternative care. At the beginning of each treatment cycle, the patient comes to the hospital, then It turns into HAD. ”
How do patients and relatives suffer from ADH?
We did two surveys, in 2014 and 2017, both of which clearly show that patients in general are very satisfied, as are their relatives. This avoids many trips to the hospital, reduces waiting time, and improves the quality of life, especially at the social and professional level. “
Digital solutions to better support patients and loved ones
In addition to these clinical advances, the importance of highly innovative digital tools in cancer treatment is increasing. Their role is always the same, to make life easier for patients and their loved ones, to support them and to improve their quality of life. The same is the case for multiple myeloma, with these two services:
Multiple myeloma in you is an artificial intelligence at the service of patients and loved ones. Designed in 2020 by the emerging Wefight in partnership with the French Association of Patients with Multiple Myeloma (AF3M) and the Janssen Laboratory, it is a virtual companion (chatbot) able to understand and respond to questions in real time. The strength of this tool is based on its ability to provide answers on many topics: nutrition, physical activity, management, disease, treatment, etc. Another feature is that it reminds patients of their medical appointments and helps them better follow their treatments. It is available via Messenger or through an application on a smartphone and tablet ..fr. It is an online platform dedicated to patients undergoing cancer treatment and their healthcare teams. It aims to reduce the numerous cancellations of appointments for administering treatments due to the patient’s deteriorating health status. Concretely, the latter on the platform responds to ten questions related to different symptoms so that the healthcare team that follows him can ensure that the patient does not have symptoms that prevent him from coming to the hospital. Okchimio.fr was developed by Janssen Lab and produced in collaboration with Dr Margaret Macro, Hematologist at CHU de Caen.
In addition to these tools, the role of associations is great. In multiple myeloma, AF3M has been mobilizing patients for nearly 15 years.
AF3M is at the service of patients and their families
Af3m, created in September 2007, is the only French association that represents myeloma patients and their relatives (caregivers). Today it has 2,800 members and nearly a hundred volunteers spread across the country.
Informing and providing assistance and support to patients, representing them with health authorities, improving their care and quality of life, as well as encouraging research into this disease are the priority tasks of the Association. For more information: https://www.af3m.org