Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Macroglobulinemia Underlying Cause

The cause for Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia is unknown, but genetics may play a role.

Genes control the functions inside a cell. Special genes control how cells divide and grow. Cancer occurs when the damaged genes stimulate the cell to multiply out of control. The exact cause for this damage is unknown.


  • DNA
  • Genes on chromosomes
  • Cancer cells
  • Cancer cell division

The cancerous white blood cells produce too many antibodies, which causes the blood to become too thick.

Continue to Macroglobulinemia Anatomy

Last Updated: Sep 18, 2008 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Macroglobulinemia References
  1. Bjorkholm M, Johansson E, Papamichael D, Celsing F, Matthews J, Lister TA, Rohatiner AZ. Patterns of clinical presentation, treatment, and outcome in patients with Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia: a two-institution study. Semin Oncol. 2003 Apr;30(2):226-30. [12720141]
  2. Chen CI. Treatment for Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia. Ann Oncol. 2004 Apr;15(4):550-8. [15033658]
  3. Dimopoulos MA, Anagnostopoulos A. Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia. Best Pract Res Clin Haematol. 2005;18(4):747-65. [16026748]
  4. Dimopoulos MA, Kyle RA, Anagnostopoulos A, Treon SP. Diagnosis and management of Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia. J Clin Oncol. 2005 Mar 1;23(7):1564-77. [15735132]
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