POEMS Syndrome


POEMS syndrome gets its name from the signs and symptoms of this rare condition. It affects people with lambda monoclonal gammopathy.

The main signs and symptoms of POEMS are:

  • Peripheral neuropathy (peh-RIH-feh-rul noor-AH-puh-thee). This is numbness, tingling, or pain in your hands and feet.
  • A monoclonal plasma cell disorder. Everyone who has POEMS syndrome has a monoclonal protein (m-protein).

The signs and symptoms of POEMS


  • Polyneuropathy is damage to peripheral nerves in your skin, muscles, and organs. It causes tingling, weakness, and numbness.


  • Organomegaly means an enlarged (bigger) spleen, liver, and sometimes lymph nodes.


  • Endocrinopathy is a disorder of the endocrine glands. It causes many symptoms, including problems with your hormones and glands.

Monoclonal gammopathy

  • Monoclonal gammopathy is sign of POEMS. Abnormal plasma cells make a high level of m-protein.

Skin lesions

  • Skin lesions mean changes in the skin, including its color. There can be thickening of your skin, changes in color, and red or purple spots.

Diagnosis for POEMS syndrome

It’s often hard to diagnose POEMS syndrome because it has so many signs and symptoms. It can be mistaken for other health problems, so it’s important to get the right diagnosis.

The tests for POEMS are similar to the tests for amyloidosis and plasmacytoma. They include blood tests, imaging tests, and biopsies.

POEMS can get worse quickly. It can be very serious if you do not start treatment right away.

Treatment for POEMS syndrome

The treatment goal for POEMS syndrome is to help your symptoms. There is no cure for the disease. But when the disease is controlled, people who have POEMS syndrome will improve.

Treatments for the symptoms of POEMS are the same as for multiple myeloma.

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