Idelalisib is an oral medication that’s FDA-approved for patients with relapsed CLL–and it’s given in combination with rituximab. While idelalisib is generally very effective, patients have reported a handful of side effects that could be a cause for concern–including diarrhea, which can lead to colitis, as well as liver irritation and lung inflammation. However, Dr. Matthew Davids, the Associate Director of the Center for CLL at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, says these side effects are rare and the treatment has a high success rate.
It’s important to note that idelalisib is not available for previously untreated patients because trials in that setting showed increased death rates due to infection. All trials exploring idelalisib in the frontline setting were shut down. The increased rates of death due to infection were not seen in trials done in the relapsed setting.
For patients diagnosed with CLL, the go-to treatment option is usually some form of chemo-immunotherapy. But this is not an option for all patients.
Oral Medicine for Relapsed CLL: Venetoclax
Oral Medicine for CLL: Ibrutinib
Oral Medicine for Relapsed CLL