Although immunosuppression associated with multiple myeloma may not predispose patients to melanoma, other immunosuppressed states may increase melanoma risk, according to recent findings.
Researchers assessed patients from 13 registries in the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program of the National Cancer Institute. The analysis included 31,622 patients diagnosed with multiple myeloma between Jan. 1, 1992, and Dec. 31, 2010.
Results showed an incidence of subsequent melanoma of 64.9 per 100,000 person-years (95% CI, 49.8-83) in this patient population.
The expected number of melanoma cases for the general population was 49.7, which the researchers noted was not significantly different from the 63 cases they observed with the same age and sex distribution (standardized incidence ratio = 1.27; 95% CI, 0.97-1.62).
Similarly, the observed and expected number of melanoma cases in the study cohort compared with the general population were not significantly different for either men or women.
In a comparison of men and women with multiple myeloma, subsequent melanoma was significantly more likely in men (SIR = 1.88; 95% CI, 1.12-3.23), according to the findings. The researchers added that this trend is consistent with the SIR of 2 reported among individuals aged 50 years or older in the general population.
“Although it appears that the immunosuppressed state associated with multiple myeloma is not associated with increased risk of melanoma, the incidence of melanoma has been shown to be increased in several immunosuppressed conditions,” the researchers concluded. “We speculate that this difference may be attributed in part to the differential suppression of the cellular constituents of the immune system among various forms immunosuppression.” – by Rob Volansky
Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.