Scalp Cooling Cap Prevents Hair loss During Chemotherapy
According to CBS News, researchers at Mount Sinai Beth Israel in New York City are testing Dignicap, a new treatment used during chemotherapy that can reduce hair loss by more than 75 percent.
The cap, which resembles a rugby helmet, is attached to a machine that brings the temperature of the patient’s scalp down to five degrees Celsius, causing the blood vessels surrounding the hair roots to contract, greatly lessening the amount of chemotherapy toxins entering the hair follicle and minimizing, and in some situations stopping, the hair from falling out.
The side effects of chemotherapy, like nausea, fatigue and hair loss, can greatly interrupt a patients life. Paula Klein, principal investigator in the clinical trial, told the source that when women undergoing the treatment are able to keep their hair, it allows for a sense of normalcy both for the woman’s self-image and her sexuality.
According to the device’s website, the side effects of Dignicap are mostly feeling cold while undergoing the treatment, which can easily be remedied with additional layers of clothing and hot beverages. The Dignicap works with most, but not all, chemotherapy drugs. The trail is in it’s final phase and results will be submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by the end of November 20140. The cap may be approved in 2015.