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When considering ibrutinib or Imbruvica for CLL treatment, is this medication classified as a “Specialty Drug” or “Chemotherapy Treatment?”

Ask the Doctor Question:

When considering ibrutinib or Imbruvica for CLL treatment, is this medication classified as a “Specialty Drug” or “Chemotherapy Treatment?” I can find no definition when looking at my Medicare options and other private insurances.

Answer: Ibrutinib (Imbruvica) is not a chemotherapy agent, so it may be under their list of specialty drugs. It is often referred to as a novel agent that is in a class of medications called Bruin’s kinase inhibitors (BTKi).