Oral Therapy

Treatment Options

Oral Therapy

There are many oral anticancer drugs approved or under investigation for the treatment of lymphoma that can be taken by mouth, either in liquid or tablet/capsule form.  Oral agents are just as effective and can have similar side effects as anticancer drugs that are given intravenously.

Oral agents are a convenient option for patients because they can be taken at home.  However, as patients are typically responsible for ensuring they take their pills, there may be an increased risk of medication errors, such as forgetting/skipping pills or self-adjusting the dosage, which can compromise the effectiveness of the anticancer therapy.

Approved Oral Targeted and Immunomodulatory Agents for Lymphoma

  • Acalabrutinib (Calquence)
  • Duvelisib (Copiktra)
  • Ibrutinib (Imbruvica)
  • Idelalisib (Zydelig)
  • Lenalidomide (Revlimid)
  • Selinexor (Xpovio)
  • Tazemetostat (Tazverik)
  • Venetoclax (Venclexta)
  • Vorinostat (Zolinza)
  • Zanubrutinib (Brukinsa)

Oral Therapy Adherence

It is critical that patients take all medications as prescribed to maximize the effectiveness of the treatment and minimize toxicity and negative therapeutic outcomes. Keeping track of medications and side effects can be complicated, particularly when a combination of medications is prescribed, each with different dosing schedules. Getting into a regular routine early is important when starting oral therapy.

Early follow-up by a pharmacist and/or other members of the healthcare team is often very helpful to make sure that patients have understood instructions and are correctly taking their medications. During follow-ups, it is very important to report missed doses. Other methods of managing therapy and adherence:

  • The LRF Focus on Lymphoma app or to set medication reminders and to keep track of dosages.
  • Drug diaries and medication dispensers that record when the pill container was opened.

To learn more about adherence, download the Oral Anticancer Adherence Fact Sheet.

Although oral therapy can be conveniently taken by mouth at home, patients may have higher out-of-pocket financial costs compared with patients on intravenous therapy receiving treatment in a doctor’s office or healthcare facility. It is important for patients to understand their health insurance coverage and their payment responsibility for oral chemotherapies. Numerous public and private resources, and manufacturers’ programs, exist to assist patients with these expenses. The Lymphoma Research Foundation offers help in finding financial assistance to those in need.

Download the Oral Agents in Lymphoma Fact Sheet

Learn more about oral agents in lymphoma.