As mentioned, multiple myeloma is a malignancy that develops in plasma cells. These are a type of white blood cell that produces antibodies in the body that fight off infection-causing pathogens. White blood cells are a critical component of the immune system and the way it eliminates infection-causing bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. When an individual's immune system becomes compromised in any way, they will be more susceptible to infections. This is because they do not have a strong defense system.
Patients with this condition have a shortage of functional plasma cells. This happens because the cancerous cells crowd them out and cause them to become non-functional. Instead of producing helpful antibodies to help fight against infection-causing pathogens, the cancerous plasma cells produce abnormal proteins that do not contribute to the immune system's actions. This malfunction allows those with multiple myeloma to experience more frequent infections than an unaffected individual.
Read more about the various symptoms of this type of cancer now.