Chasing Zero Hair Loss During Chemotherapy

UK-based scalp cooling pioneer, Paxman is touting its commitment to ‘chase zero hair loss during chemotherapy’ at the 2015 European Cancer Congress, Europe’s largest cancer platform being held in Vienna, Austria (September 25 – 29th, 2015).

Background

Hair loss is a well-known side effect of many chemotherapy regimens, with many patients claiming it is the most traumatic aspect of their treatment. Scalp cooling provides the only real alternative to hair loss resulting in a high level of retention or complete hair preservation, improving patients’ self-confidence and creating positive attitudes towards treatment. It works by lowering scalp temperature before, during and after the administration of chemotherapy.

We’ve covered Paxman and its clever hair loss reduction system before, most recently when the company showed its wares at the International Breast Cancer Conference back in March. Find that piece here.

The company’s commitment to the noble cause of reducing hair loss during chemotherapy encompasses heavy investment in new R&D, particularly funding multi-disciplinary research groups. It’s also supporting clinical trials aimed at optimising scalp cooling. The end result will, it hopes, ultimately raise the success rate of ‘zero hair loss’ from 50/50 to 80/20 by the year 2020.

As part of its commitment, Paxman has founded an international multi-disciplinary special interest group (SIG) to look into chemotherapy-induced alopecia (CIA) and scalp cooling. Research will include reduced post infusion cooling times, further in-vitro modelling to better understand the mechanisms of scalp cooling, understanding the role in temperature with different chemotherapy regimens and measuring patient comfort.

In the long term, Paxman is also proposing maintaining a registry of all scalp cooling patients in the UK, in order to undertake epidemiological studies of large groups of scalp cooling patients to track their long term health.

As well as this patient focussed research, Paxman is also undertaking a series of clinical trials in the UK, the US, Japan, Australia, Germany and Austria and is also developing a third-generation of the cooling cap to ensure it fits people’s heads more efficiently.

Physician comments

Dr Corina van den Hurk, an expert in scalp cooling, said: “Hair loss is a neglected side effect of chemotherapy and up until now, has hardly been studied by medical professionals and scientists. For patients however, it is one of the most feared side effects of treatment and something that has the most impact on their daily life.

“Hair loss through chemotherapy is associated with young and middle aged women – mainly those being treated for breast cancer but our studies show that many male patients are just as keen to keep their hair once they are offered the option of scalp cooling. Scalp cooling is a vital element of supportive care for all patients from all cultures with all types of cancer, whatever their age or gender.”

Company comments 

Richard Paxman Managing Director of Paxman, said: “We know scalp cooling works, so our aim is to raise the success rate for all patients undergoing chemotherapy so no one ever has to lose their hair as a side effect of cancer.”

“We are committed to working globally with clinicians and patients to achieve this and are doing everything possible to understand alopecia and improve scalp cooling for the hundreds of people who use it every day. We are committed to ensuring that everyone undergoing chemotherapy treatment keeps their hair and will not stop until we achieve zero hair loss.”

Source: Paxman

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