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Delayed hair loss after chemo? Delayed hair loss after chemo?

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Unread 03-29-2004, 01:35 PM
Delayed hair loss after chemo?

I finished six cycles of chemo (Cisplatin) the last week of January. I didn't lose any hair at the time, but just within the last week I've noticed my hair is a lot thinner than it used to be! Reading a lot of the Hormone Jungle posts, I thought maybe it was my Climara patch (which I started Feb. 20), but my onc/gyn seems to think it's a delayed chemo or radiation effect. I don't understand how it could be a radiation effect, since I had pelvic radiation -- would it affect my head?? But has anyone else experienced hair loss *after* chemo that wasn't related to an ERT patch? (I posted this message in the Hormone Jungle as well, I hope that's okay.)
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Unread 03-29-2004, 02:50 PM
Delayed hair loss after chemo?

I've noticed for the past several years that my hair has become thinner on the very top of my head. I don't think that the chemo/radiation has made any difference. I mentioned it to my hairdresser and she said the same thing happens to every woman as she ages.

Are you still scheduled for a hysterectomy? Did you ever find out how much of your tumor remains? Has the cancer been detected anywhere else? Will you need more chemo after surgery? (I know we can't have more radiation but I assume we can have more chemo.)

Wishing you the best,
Unread 03-29-2004, 03:06 PM
Delayed hair loss after chemo?

Well, I'm sure this hair loss has something to do with my treatments (rad/chemo/patch). I've never had this problem before! I'd rather not stop using the patch just to rule that out just, because I don't want to be suffering those awful hot flashes while I'm recovering. OTOH, I don't want to lose any more hair if all it is the patch! Hysterectomy is scheduled for next Tuesday. I don't know how big the tumor is now, he didn't say when he examined me last month. As far as I know it hasn't spread, but won't know for sure until after surgery. I asked the PA today what would happen if they did find more cancer, and she said I'd probably be scheduled for more chemo, but I won't know until about a week after surgery. (And I asked about radiation, and yes, it is possible to have more radiation post-op.)
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Unread 03-29-2004, 07:47 PM
Delayed hair loss after chemo?

I don't know what the patch is that you have, but if it is female hormones then your hair should be increasing, not decreasing. It's male hormones that cause hair loss, as far as I have heard.

My rad/onc said that the same area of the body cannot be radiated twice. But if chemo doesn't work they can try a different kind of chemo.

I am so sorry that the standard treatment didn't work for you. I hope that the surgery does work and that's the end of it for you. I am surprised that your doctor isn't telling you more about your current condition and the prognosis. I am sure that he must have a good reason for scheduling the surgery and he should be sharing those reasons with you. Does he expect that the surgery will be all that you will need? I sure hope so! You've had enough!

Unread 03-29-2004, 08:02 PM
Delayed hair loss after chemo?

I'm using Climara, but will switch to Vivelle because my insurance doesn't cover Climara.

I think we've already discovered that our doctors have different theories and practices. Mine says repeat radiation is possible. I didn't have a full treatment (what he'd normally prescribe after unsuccessful surgery), so maybe that's why in this case radiation would be possible. But I got the impression chemo would be the route they'd take first if they didn't get it all in surgery.

The tumor is still there, I just haven't asked how big it is. I want it out, it doesn't matter to me how big it is. He's definitely planning on surgery being the end of it all. I'm the one that asks about the "what ifs" after. He and my radiologist have both said not to worry about that unless it comes down to it, but every intention is for surgery to take care of it all.
Unread 03-29-2004, 09:56 PM
Delayed hair loss after chemo?

Sorry, I don't know anything about either of those patches but I bet someone else here does.

It isn't a difference between my doctor and your doctor. It's a difference between standard practice and a different practice. My doctor does what is standard medical practice and yours does something else.

Ask your radiation oncologist, or anyone here, you cannot have radiation twice on the same area. If you had 25 doses of radiation, more or less, your are done! You won't ever have to do that again, regardless of what happens.

It sounds like after surgery you will be finished with cancer treatment, so your doctors are right, there is no need to worry about any of it. There is probably very little evidence of your cancer now, after chemo and radiation, and surgery will just seal the deal! You will be cancer free for good! And that's a wonderful, wonderful, feeling!


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