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Jonathon B. Cohen, MD, MS, discusses the evolution of treating patients with additional comorbidities in chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Jonathon B. Cohen, MD, MS, associate professor, Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, co-director, Lymphoma Program, chair, Data and Safety Monitoring Committee, Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University, discusses the evolution of treating patients with additional comorbidities in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).
CLL is typically diagnosed in older patients, leading to a higher likelihood of the presence of additional comorbidities, such as diabetes, heart disease, or lung disease, Cohen says. It is crucial to consider these comorbidities when making treatment decisions for patients, Cohen adds. Since many chemotherapy regimens cannot be safely administered to patients with multiple comorbidities, other options must be considered, Cohen explains.
Alternate treatment options for patients with CLL and comorbidities include oral therapies such as BTK inhibitors and venetoclax (Venclexta), though those patients with comorbidities may still require additional supportive care or dosing adjustments, Cohen continues. Communication between patients and physicians is key to understand how comorbidities can help inform treatment decisions, Cohen concludes.