In multiple myeloma (MM), health-related quality of life (HRQoL) data is becoming increasingly important, owing to improved survival outcomes and the impact of treatment-related toxicity on HRQoL. Researchers are more frequently including HRQoL assessments in clinical trials, but analysis and reporting of this data has not been consistent. A systematic literature review assessed the effect of novel agents (thalidomide, bortezomib and lenalidomide) on HRQoL in MM patients, and evaluated the subsequent reporting of these HRQoL results. A relatively small body of literature addresses HRQoL data in MM patients treated with novel MM therapeutic agents: 9 manuscripts and 15 conference proceedings. The literature demonstrates the complementary value of HRQoL when assessing clinical response, progression, overall survival and toxicity. However, weaknesses and inconsistencies in analysis and presentation of HRQoL data were observed, often complicating interpretation of the impact of treatment on HRQoL in MM. Further evaluation of HRQoL in MM patients treated with novel agents is required in larger cohorts, and ideally in head-to-head comparative studies. Additionally, the development of standardised MM-specific best practice guidelines in HRQoL data collection and analysis is recommended. These would ensure that future data are more useful in guiding predictive models and clinical decisions.