What Are The Symptoms Of MGUS Or Monoclonal Gammopathy Of Undetermined Significance?

Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance is a rare disease that is represented by the abnormal presence of a protein named monoclonal proteins. These proteins are also called M protein. They are formed when plasma produces these proteins instead of antibodies when body fight against infection. The levels of M protein may increase slowly leading to other disorders. It may be associated with other diseases. It is usually seen in old people of 70 years or above. It usually does not represent signs and symptoms. It also reduces the bone density may cause bone fractures. It is a benign condition which may progress into cancers like lymphoma, myeloma, etc.

What Are The Symptoms of MGUS or Monoclonal Gammopathy of Undetermined Significance?

Most cases of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance are without any sign or symptom. This disease is diagnosed accidentally in a blood test done for other conditions. In rare cases, the following symptoms are present-

  • Tingling sensation
  • Numbness due to nerves involvement
  • Weakness in the nerves
  • Rashes or irritation in the skin
  • Bone loss or bone fractures

The risk factors that can promote the development of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance are-

  • Its incidence increases with increasing age. It develops in old people whose age is 70 years or above. Its incidence is highest in the age of 85 years or above.
  • Constant exposure to pesticides also possesses the risk of developing MGUS.
  • The disease is more common in Africans, and African-Americans than white people.
  • Males are more affected than females.
  • There are high chances of developing MGUS if there is a family history of this disease.

Complications Of Monoclonal Gammopathy Of Undetermined Significance

Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance has one percent chance to progress to serious disorders. It depends on the type of MGUS the patient has developed and these can be understood by following-

IgM MGUS– it is detected in 15% of the patients of MGUS. It proceeds to rare cancer like lymphoma, Waldenstrom macroglobulinemia, AL amyloidosis, etc.

Non-IgM MGUS– it is a most common type of MGUS that often convert into multiple myeloma. It is less likely to proceed into other cancerous disorders like AL amyloidosis or light chain deposition disease.

Light Chain MGUS– it can precede to a condition in which M protein gets filtered from the kidneys and are passed in the urine. This condition is known as Bence Jones proteinuria. It can also progress to light chain multiple myeloma, light chain deposition disease or AL amyloidosis. The other complications of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance are bone fractures, problems related to blood clotting and kidney.

Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) is a disease which is characterized by the presence of specific protein named monoclonal protein or M protein in the blood. This protein is an abnormal protein formed from white blood cells. It is produced by plasma cells in bone marrow instead of antibodies. It circulates in the blood. This disease is often associated with other disease and it will slowly proceed to other problems like cancer of blood over a period of years. However, this progress is slow and gradual that leads to slow loss of density of bone and may cause fractures.

Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance should be monitored regularly to check the levels of M protein in the blood. This will help to check the progress of the disease to the other complications like multiple myeloma, lymphoma, etc. This progression can be prevented with treatment or complication can be treated at an earlier stage. If the levels of M protein remain constant and does not increase for years, it does not require treatment.

Conclusion

Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance is a benign condition that leads to the presence of abnormal proteins named M protein in the blood. It does not show signs and symptoms. In rare cases, it causes irritation in the skin, bone fractures and nerve symptoms such as tingling, numbness, and weakness.

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