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Indian J Clin Biochem. 2005 Jan;20(1):193-7. doi: 10.1007/BF02893069.

A case of IgA multiple myeloma: Nutritional perspective in diagnostic testing.

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  • 1Department of Chemical Pathology, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.


A 64-year-old security guard and longstanding known hypertensive presented with hypertensive heart disease (HHD), weight loss, an enlarged prostate, and a spontaneously fractured rib. Malignancy of the prostate with possible metastases to the ribs was strongly suspected. Biochemical profiling revealed a paraprotein. Other biochemical and hematological correlates that were on hand before serum protein electrophoresis were rather atypical. Paraprotein studies by immunofixation revealed IgA myelomatosis. Unlike previous reports from Caucasians there was normocalcaemia, normal protein level, microcytic hypochromia, low MCHC, cholesterol level at the lower limit of the reference range and normal urea level (in the face of markedly raised creatinine level). Nutritional modulation of the classical laboratory features of this disease may account for the fairly atypical laboratory picture.The need to appreciate the influence of nutritional status on the laboratory (especially biochemical) features of a disease and thus interpretation of diagnostic tests appears of exceptional current importance, given the widening gap in socioeconomic status and the level of poverty between the resource poor and developed countries from which the classical, clinical and laboratory features of most diseases were first described.This case report reminds of the need not only to recognize theoretically the impact of nutritional status on the laboratory characteristics of a disease but of the practical application of the nutritional perspective in the interpretation of diagnostic investigations, especially in nutritionally disadvantaged communities.


Immunofixation; Malignancy; Multiple Myeloma; Nutritional Status; Protein electrophoresis; Resource Poor Communities

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