Doctors discover hair-loss prevention drug for cancer patients

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Autumn2004, Jul 9, 2007.

  1. Autumn2004

    Autumn2004 Inactive

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    A Japanese medical team has found that a form of antibiotic could prevent cancer patients from losing hair during chemotherapy, a doctor involved in the research said Monday.




    Toshiyuki Sakai said his team had found "alopestatin" reduced hair loss by 70 percent when used on rats also given etoposide anti-cancer drugs.



    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20070709/hl_afp/japanpharmamedicine

    My aunt had a hard time when she was dealing with cancer, so many would talk to her about it and ask her about it because they could tell she had lost her hair. Many of them were strangers in public. She stopped going out as much because it seemed she was becoming just her cancer to the outside world sometimes. I think this is a great treatment to help so you dont have to feel like a cancer billboard and only tell it if you choose to.
     
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  3. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth Active Member

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    I'm always so happy when they make improvements in cancer treatment. I had leukemia when I was eleven years old. Though there were a lot of treatments that were uncomfortable I think the worst thing for me was having to go back to school after having lost most of my hair.
     
  4. englishleigh

    englishleigh Authentic Southern Belle

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    :blowkiss: So happy you are all right now!

    I think this is also a great thing. The hair loss has to be more trauma added to an already traumatic experience.
     
  5. Autumn2004

    Autumn2004 Inactive

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    Im so glad you are fine now :) Im sorry you had to go through that, its hard enough as an adult but I cant imagine dealing with it as a kid.
     
  6. Peter Hamilton

    Peter Hamilton New Member

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    --glad you are healthy now lizzybeth!--I hope also this new product becomes put into widespread use--My own father lost all his hair many years ago during some grueling chemotherapy
     
  7. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth Active Member

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    Thanks guys. I wasn't trying to make it about me. Just remembering how emotionally upsetting it can be to lose your hair.
     
  8. Marthatex

    Marthatex New Member

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    My husand has lost most of his hair, but not all of it. He looks pretty different though.

    I wish I had known about that treatment. We are hoping his hair will grow back soon.
     
  9. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth Active Member

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    Marthatex, what I've found and a few people have told me the same thing, is that your hair doesn't always grow back the way it was before. I had long, straight blonde hair. When it came back it was dark and wavy. Everyone told me that there's no way that could happen since you can't change the shape of your hair follicle. Well, chemo changes cells so it is possible.

    My prayers are with you and your husband.
     
  10. deanws

    deanws Former Member

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    OMGosh...my hair came back curly too! :) All I care is that it came back!!!! :D
     
  11. Marthatex

    Marthatex New Member

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    Thanks, yes my mother's grew back pretty well also, silver gray (she was 68)

    It's hard to tell about my husband, he may have a little more "fur" underneath.
    His hair is dark now; he lost most of the gray.

    How long does it take to grow back? He didn't lose quite all of his hair.

    I'm glad yall's hair grew back! If you beat cancer- doesn't matter whether you're blonde or brunette!
     
  12. Squishified

    Squishified Active Member

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    When my husband went through chemo he lost all his hair, and I do mean ALL his hair.;) It all grew back, though in some areas I would have liked a little less.
     
  13. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth Active Member

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    I think it just depends on the person. I was eleven and thought I could grow my long hair back in a matter of months. LOL. It seemed like it took forever but I think that was because I was impatient. Of course I didn't lose all of it. It was patchy. If your husband wears his hair short it shouldn't be long once he stops the meds that's causing the hair loss before he gets his back.
     
  14. Show Me

    Show Me New Member

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    Wow Lizzybeth! I'm happy you beat cancer. How many years has it been?
    My cousin's hair was sandy blonde and came in dark and wavy too.
     
  15. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth Active Member

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    Showme, it's been thirty-four years as of July 13 since I was diagnosed. Waaay back then chemo was for five years. President Nixon (gosh I'm old) approved a study at the Medical College of VA that I was a part of. It was a godsend as I don't think my parents could have afforded the treatments on their own even though we had great insurance. Anyway, at that time they were saying I would probably never be able to have children. I have two! and they are perfectly healthy. Unfortunately once I turned sixteen and chemo was over I eventually dropped out of the study. I really regret it as I think maybe they could have learned a lot following me. Plus, it seems there are some residual/long lasting effects of some of the drugs used that I would like to be more aware of. One being that I honestly think I have a slight learning disability now and a few other things but I'm happy to be here and feel very blessed.
     
  16. SewingDeb

    SewingDeb "Sorry, I'm not qualified to land the plane."

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    You have been blessed. Maybe it's not too late to contact the researchers to bring them up to date on your life since treatment. They can still learn a lot from you, especially that you were able to have healthy children.
     
  17. SewingDeb

    SewingDeb "Sorry, I'm not qualified to land the plane."

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    I've never been through chemo but before my first pregnancy my hair was very straight, in the weeks after my daughter was born my hair became wavy and has much more body. My sister went through a similar thing after her first pregnancy. Her hair was light brown and straight, it became dark brown and curly within weeks of giving birth. My third sister saw no changes in her hair, but both of her babies were born very prematurely.

    I've never heard of this with other families.
     
  18. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth Active Member

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    SewingDeb, I've tried. The doctors that were in charge have passed away. It was a teaching hospital so most of the other doctors were interns and have moved on to their own practices. I've contacted MCV through e-mail and never go a response. I just figured after all this long they probably have many more successful cases. I haven't even been able to contact the local oncologist that saw me between treatments at MCV. I guess I've waited too late. Thirty-four years is a long time.

    I've never heard of anyone's hair changing, at least not permanently, when pregnant. Mine looked better but I figured that was due to taking better care of my health. That's strange. I wonder if there are other cases?
     
  19. Marthatex

    Marthatex New Member

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    Bless you all who have survived cancer; I'm going to wear the yellow livestrong bracelet for sure. I never reallized how devastating cancer is until it has struck my beloved father and my cute husband.

    My husband was really helped by the NIH doctor up there in Virginia. SHE, yes she, called him on a Sunday to confirm his diagnosis.

    :blowkiss:
     
  20. SheWhoMustNotBeNamed

    SheWhoMustNotBeNamed Former Member

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    I know after my mom went through chemo, she had a lot of problems with her memory. She called it "chemo brain". She actually clipped out an article that said doctors believe that chemo affects memory and possibly some other learning things.

    On the hair topic, I know my mom also had a hard time with losing her hair. She had long, beautiful, curly hair and shaved her head to avoid the patchy look as it was falling out. When it was shaved, I remember she was really upset. It was "only hair" and "it will grow back", but it is still such a change and can be hard to deal with. I think part of it was it made others recognize her as having cancer. And she didn't want anyone to know that she was "sick".

    I also want to say to the ones who have fought cancer, way to go! I know that it takes great strength to do that, and I hope you all continue your fight and stay cancer free. Also, to those with family members or friends dealing with it, I hope you also stay strong and positive. I just lost my mother on June 30 after she fought so hard for 4 years, so I know the pain that is associated with it. Have faith.
     
  21. becklynn

    becklynn New Member

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    My kids grandmother ( my ex mother in law) had 2 bouts of cancer. The last was really tough on her and she lost her hair very soon after starting intense chemo. She never bought a wig, just used a floppy hat. Took a long time for new hair to come back and a long time to grow even the slightest bit full. The new hair was all different colors at first too.But now she is back with a full head of hair. Four years cancer free now too. Hope things work well for your husband and you.
     

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