Introduction: Despite many recent advances in the treatment of multiple myeloma (MM), infection remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality. Prior studies have shown mixed results using intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) to prevent infections in MM and were conducted prior to most modern MM therapies. Patients and Methods: We retrospectively reviewed all patients with MM treated with IVIG at our institution from 2010 to 2017. The primary endpoint was the incidence rate ratio (IRR) of infectious events (IEs) per patient-year during IVIG versus observation. Results: A total of 68 patients were included; 151 IEs occurred during 918 months of IVIG treatment, whereas 446 IEs occurred during 2484 months of observation. Although the annual rate of IEs was substantially higher during periods of progressive disease (PD) compared with non-PD (4.9 vs. 1.8; P <.001), most IEs occurred during periods of non-PD (75% vs. 25% during PD). There was no overall difference in the annual rate of IEs per patient between IVIG and observation (1.97 vs. 2.16; IRR, 0.92; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.76-1.10; P =.376). The subgroup of patients with hypogammaglobulinemia and whose myeloma was in a non-PD phase had a significant reduction in all-grade IEs (1.20 vs. 1.92; IRR, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.45-0.88; P =.009) and ≥ grade 3 IEs (0.25 vs. 0.56; IRR, 0.45; 95% CI, 0.22-0.94; P =.041) with IVIG compared with observation. Conclusion: Although treatment with IVIG did not show benefit in the overall population, there may be subgroups of patients that derive significant benefit. Additional observational studies are needed to confirm these findings and further refine patient selection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e470-e476
JournalClinical Lymphoma, Myeloma and Leukemia
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2021


  • Hypogammaglobulinemia
  • IVIG
  • Immune globulin
  • Progressive disease
  • Stable disease


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