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Doctors classify amyloidosis into three major forms:
Primary amyloidosis. This most common form of amyloidosis can affect many areas, including your heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, nerves, intestines, skin, tongue and blood vessels. Primary amyloidosis isn't associated with other diseases — except for multiple myeloma, a form of bone marrow cancer.
The exact cause of primary amyloidosis is unknown, but doctors do know that the disease begins in your bone marrow. In addition to producing red and white blood cells and platelets, your bone marrow makes antibodies — proteins that protect you against infection and disease. After antibodies serve their function, your body breaks them down and recycles them. Amyloidosis occurs when cells in the bone marrow produce antibodies that can't be broken down. These antibodies then build up in your bloodstream. Ultimately, they leave your bloodstream and can deposit in your tissues as amyloid, interfering with normal function.
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