Complete Remission of Acute Myeloid Leukemia in an Elderly Patient with a Single Dose of Venetoclax
Treatment of Acute Myeloid Leukemia in older adults becomes challenging due to co-morbidities, poor functional status, higher incidence of unfavorable cytogenetics, and increased treatment resistance. Even though the overall survival in older patients with AML has historically remained poor, recent advances in treatment have resulted in improved survival in this population. Venetoclax, an oral BCL-2 inhibitor in combination with hypomethylating agents or low-dose cytarabine has been granted FDA approval for treatment of AML in patients who are 75 years or older or have co-morbid conditions that prohibit the use of intensive chemotherapy. This case report describes an elderly male patient who was diagnosed with AML and went into complete remission with a single dose of Venetoclax. Older patients who previously had high mortality due to the disease are now eligible for treatment with agents like Venetoclax with an acceptable toxicity profile. As we gain more understanding and experience with these newer drugs, a subset of patients could potentially be candidates for treatment with modified regimes which involves less drug exposure while maintaining remission and preserving the quality of life in the elderly population.