Dr. Shadman on Continuous Vs Time-Limited Treatments in CLL

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Mazyar Shadman, MD, discusses continuous vs time-limited treatments for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Mazyar Shadman, MD, a physician and associate professor in the Divisions of Medical Oncology and Clinical Research at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, discusses continuous vs time-limited treatments for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

When the field shifted away from chemotherapy approaches toward BTK inhibitors, CLL treatment became continuous; the disease becoming more of a chronic illness, Shadman says. This method has proven to be extremely effective and is supported by long-term data, Shadman explains. Venetoclax (Venclexta) brought back the possibility of a time-limited option for patients.

Now that there is a drug capable of yielding deep remissions, it is worth considering combinations with another class of drug or more, thus achieving the best possible remission, Shadman says. This would be determined through minimal residual disease detection.

By achieving a deep and sustained remission in which patients with CLL may not relapse for a long time, or potentially ever, it may be possible to achieve cure, Shadman concludes.

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