Bortezomib is a common multiple myeloma therapy that can cause treatment-related peripheral neuropathy, a risk factor for falls. The relationship between bortezomib and falls in older patients with multiple myeloma is unknown.
In a recent study published in the Journal of Geriatric Oncology, in older adults with multiple myeloma, bortezomib was associated with an increased risk of having a diagnostic code for falls. Decreased overall survival was seen in those who fell within the year of starting therapy. Prospective trials involving fall assessments and fall-prevention interventions are still needed in this population.
You may not have any residents with a diagnosis of multiple myeloma and that’s awesome, however, it only takes one resident with a negative outcome. If you do have a resident or several with this diagnosis, please ask their physician to do a risk/benefit of their current drug regimen. Living with this diagnosis is devastating enough without adding the risk of a fall that may result in premature death. Stay well, mask up, stay tuned!