How To Get Started With Oral Minoxidil Today
For many people hair is a defining feature, which is why hair loss disorders can be so distressing. Hair conditions can come in many forms from the genetic androgenetic alopecia condition that affect both men and women, the auto-immune disorder alopecia areata, loose anlagen syndrome, and the stress or trauma based telogen effluvium. If you are dealing with any of those conditions, oral Minoxidil may be the best solution for you. The medication results in thicker, healthier hair follicles, which leads to more volume and less hair loss. The best place to start is by consulting with a board-certified dermatologist, such as Dr. Michele Green. Please contact us online or call to learn more about how oral minoxidil can treat your hair disorder.
Eyebrows Eyelashes And Make
With some chemotherapies, people might also lose their eyebrows and eyelashes. Make-up, eyebrow pencil, eyeliner or false eyelashes can help, and many cancer support groups have workshops to help patients learn these techniques.
For example, the charity Look Good Feel Better holds free skincare and make-up workshops and masterclasses across the UK for women undergoing treatment for cancer.
Why Will I Lose My Hair During Cancer Treatment
Cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy, attack fast-growing cancer cells. These treatments can also affect normal cells that grow fast, such as hair cells.
Chemotherapy can cause hair loss on your scalp, pubic area, arms, legs, eyebrows, and eyelashes. Radiation therapy to your head often causes hair loss on your scalp. Sometimes, depending on the dose of radiation to your head, your hair may grow back differently from how it looked before, or it may not grow back at all.
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Hair Loss From Chemo And Radiation
Chemotherapy drugs that kill cancer cells can also damage hair follicles, which causes your hair to fall out. Some of these medications may thin the hair on your scalp or make it all fall out. Others can cause hair loss on body parts like:
- Around the eyes
Radiation can cause you to lose hair on the part of your body that gets treatment. Your prostate gland is just below your bladder and above the base of your , so radiation there might lead to hair loss in your pubic area.
Not everyone who has chemo or radiation loses hair. Before you start, ask your doctor how likely it is that youÃ¢ll have this side effect and whether it might happen slowly or quickly.
Hair loss usually starts 1 to 3 weeks after you begin treatment. You may notice it more within 1 to 2 months.
How much hair you lose depends on things like:
- The type of chemo or radiation you have
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Hair Loss After Chemotherapy: 10 Things To Know
If you need chemotherapy as a part of your cancer treatment, you might have some concerns about losing your hair. But does every chemotherapy drug cause hair loss? And is there anything you can do to prevent this possible side effect?
What are the most common causes of hair loss during cancer treatment?
Most hair loss during cancer treatment is caused by chemotherapy. Thats because chemo targets rapidly growing cells, which damages hair follicles and makes the hair fall out. But radiation therapy can sometimes cause hair loss, too, when its used to treat head and neck cancers. It depends on the area thats receiving radiation.
Do all chemotherapy drugs cause hair loss?
No. Not all chemotherapy drugs have hair loss as a possible side effect. Check with your care team to find out if its a potential side effect for the drugs youll be taking.
Will every patient who receives chemotherapy lose their hair?
No. Everyone has a different response. Some people might lose all of their body hair, while others experience only mild thinning.
How soon does hair loss usually appear after cancer treatment begins?
It generally becomes noticeable after about three weeks. Head hair usually goes first, followed by hair from other areas of the body. But again, everyone responds differently, so it could be sooner or later, depending on the individual.
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Preparing For Hair Loss
The following tips may help decrease hair loss, thinning, or breaking:
- Be gentle: Try using amild fragrance-free shampoo, a soft-bristled brush, or a wide-tooth comb, and avoid brushing your hair while wet. It can also help to not wash your hair every day and use a conditioner or detangler spray when you do shampoo.
- Avoid over-styling: Try to avoid over-styling or pulling. This includes braiding, using curlers, putting your hair in a ponytail, or using rubber bands or clips.
- Try to avoid extra heat: It helps to reduce excessive heat from hair dryers, hot rollers, brush rollers, and straightening or curling irons. Use low heat if you do use a hair dryer.
- Say no to harsh chemicals: Do your best to avoid hair dyes, color, bleach, or perms as they can do further damage to your already fragile hair.
- Sleep on silk or satin pillowcases: Cotton pillowcases generate too much friction and can lead to breakage, but a smoother material like satin can help reduce hair loss.
- Consider cutting your hair short: Shorter cuts can create the illusion of a thicker and fuller head of hair. A short style also makes hair loss easier to deal with if it happens.
Oral Minoxidil For Hair Loss
Hair loss conditions can be very distressing for the many patients who experience hair disorders throughout their lifetime. There are many reasons why hair loss or thinning may occur, ranging from female or male patterned baldness also known as androgenetic alopecia, hair loss as a result of shock or trauma, auto-immune disorders, or other genetic conditions. According to a study published in PubMed, androgenetic alopecia alone can affect up to 80% of men and 50% of women throughout their lives, which equates to approximately 50 million American men and 30 million American women each year. Hair loss treatment can feel difficult to navigate as there seem to be many options available, but how do you know which ones will really work? That is why it is best to begin by consulting with a board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Michele Green in NYC, who can provide you with a safe and effective treatment plan, potentially containing such prescription medications such as oral Minoxidil for hair loss.
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How Does Chemotherapy Cause Hair Loss
Since all cancer cells grow faster than normal cells of the body, the chemo drugs target these cells that are dividing rapidly and cause them to die. Unfortunately, there are also some other cells that grow fast in the body.
The cells that are affected by the chemo drugs are the hair follicles, the cells of the alimentary canal, and the bone marrow. The effect of chemotherapy then causes side effects.
Anemia and low blood count might occur due to the death of the cells of the bone marrow. Nausea and vomiting might take place due to the death of the cells of the digestive organs. Hair loss will likely occur due to the death of the keratinocytes in the hair follicles.
The severity of these side effects depends on factors like
- The dose and frequency of the therapy
- The route through which the drug was administered
- The types of chemo drugs used.
Salinomycin Iv: Breast Cancer Treatment No Hair Loss
Another way to prevent hair loss from chemo is to not do chemo. If youre scared of working alone to cure cancer at home and you feel like you need to work with a doctor directly, ask your oncologist about IV salinomycin, another FDA-approved cure for cancer that has been carefully hidden from public view. Salinomycin is a powerful and effective breast cancer cure and it does not involve chemotherapy. This is an antibiotic medicine that kills the pathogen that causes cancer. As such, it works as a breast cancer treatment without hair loss as a side effect. This is an FDA approved cancer treatment that doesnt cause hair loss and that has a remarkably high cure rate though hardly anyone knows about it. Your oncologist may or may not be willing to administer salinomycin because he could lose his license for doing it even though this medicine is FDA-approved. If this treatment interests you, contact one of the no-chemo, no-radiation cancer treatment facilities that administers salinomycin in this list.
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What Are The Side Effects Of Oral Minoxidil
There are several potential side effects that can develop as a result of taking oral Minoxidil. At higher doses, there is a higher risk of adverse effects such as postural hypotension, which is when there is a sudden drop in blood pressure occurs when you sit or stand up quickly, pedal edema, which is when fluid retention in the feet causes the feet and ankles to swell, tachycardia, which is defined as an elevated heart rate outside of strenuous activity, and, in more serious cases, angina, which is when low blood flow to the heart leads to chest pain and potential heart failure.
How To Use A Low Dose Of Oral Minoxidil For Hair Growth
Topical minoxidil is best known for its capacity to regrow lost hair and to slow down hair loss. But using minoxidil orally for hair growth can also be effective, albeit used less frequently.
As you will see in this article, empirical evidence supports the notion that a low dosage of oral minoxidil can be effective to combat hair loss.
Let me explain how to use a low dose of oral minoxidil for hair growth, and what the most appropriate dosage is for both men and women.
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What Are My Options
There are many ways to cover up hair loss. Hats, scarves and turbans are popular options for men and women.
- hats â there are many styles to choose from
- scarves â versatile with many colour and fabric options, lightweight materials such as cotton are best
- turbans â easy to wear and widely available
- wigs â you can continue with a familiar style or try something new
Some hats, headbands or bandanas have optional fringe or hair attachments. If you still have some hair, changing your hairstyle can help cover up hair loss. Specialist hairdressers like mynewhair can offer advice.
In certain situations surgery to replace hair might be an option if your hair loss is permanent. This treatment is not available through the NHS.
You may not want to wear anything on your head. Accessories, clothing and makeup can express your style and draw attention away from hair loss.
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The Best Candidates For Scalp Cooling
Men and women undergoing chemotherapy for solid tumors may be candidates for scalp coolingas long as they can tolerate the cold, says Manpreet Kohli, MD, Director of Breast Surgery at Monmouth Medical Center.
The technique may not work as well with certain chemotherapy regimens, though. For instance, it doesnt appear to be as effective for patients receiving drug anthracycline.
Talk to your medical oncologist to find out if you might benefit from scalp cooling.
For more information about cancer treatment at Monmouth Medical Center visit The Leon Hess Cancer Center.
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What Else Contributes To Hair Loss
There are a number of non-cancer-related medications that are also associated with hair loss. These might accentuate the effects of chemotherapy drugs if used alongside them.
Some of these include:
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications
- Antidepressants like tricyclic antidepressants and Wellbutrin
In addition to medications, illness, surgery, or dietary changes may lead to hair loss.
Thyroid disease may cause hair loss and may occur as a result of cancer treatment .
Cold Caps During Chemotherapy
A cold cap is a hat that is worn during some chemotherapy treatments. Its cooling effect reduces blood flow to the scalp, which also reduces the amount of chemotherapy medication that reaches this area. This helps to prevent hair loss.
It’s usually worn for 15 minutes before each chemotherapy treatment. You can find out about scalp cooling caps on the Macmillan website.
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Hypertrichosis With Oral Minoxidil
Hypertrichosis is the most common side effect of oral minoxidil and occurs in up to one half of patients. In a recent review by Jiminez-Cauhe et al published in Dermatologic Therapy, the risk of hypertrichosis with oral minoxidil was clearly related the dose that a patient used. I have summarized the key data below. This data comes from 14 studies in over 442 patients.
Can You Use Oral And Topical Minoxidil Together
Topical Minoxidil and Oral Minoxidil should not be used together. Typically, a dermatologist may begin by prescribing topical Minoxidil and then may switch the prescription to oral Minoxidil if the topical formulation is not proving to be effective or is irritating the scalp. Oral Minoxidil can be combined with finasteride, which is a medication that can be taken specifically to combat male patterned baldness. The drug helps to inhibit the bodys changing of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone, which is a hormone that can harm the hair follicles. With less dihydrotestosterone present in the scalp, there is a lower chance of the harm to the hair follicles.
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How To Tackle Hair Loss Caused By Chemotherapy
Although most of the drugs used in the treatment of cancer can cause hair loss, some of them do not. The pattern of hair loss differs from drug to drug. While some will cause a rapid loss of hair, others might start off with the thinning of hair.
It is also important to talk to your doctor so they can the side effects can be explained before going into the therapy. It is a good idea to let your family know what to expect, especially the young ones.
You can choose a scarf or a wig to wear after the loss of hair occurs. The loss of hair by chemotherapy is temporary. The hair that grows after the therapy might also be of a different shade from the original. This is also temporary.
However, you could reduce the impact of chemotherapy drugs on your hair follicles using a cooling cap.
Targeted Drugs And Hair Loss
Hair loss is uncommon in people who are treated with targeted drugs it affects fewer than 15 in 100 people.
Some targeted drugs are a type of immunotherapy treatment, for example antibody therapy. They use your immune system to treat your lymphoma. Fewer than 2 in 100 people treated with immunotherapy are affected by hair loss.
Some targeted drugs work on a protein called epidermal growth factor receptor , which fuels the growth of cancer cells. EGFR is also needed for the normal growth of hair and nails, which is why these drugs can cause changes to your hair and nails.
Targeted drugs might cause:
- the hair on your head to become more thin, dry or curly
- your hair to turn a yellow colour
- hair on your face, including eyelashes and eyebrows, to grow more quickly and thickly.
- mens facial hair growth to slow and eyebrows to thin
- changes to your nails, for example, they might become discoloured, brittle and dry.
When you can expect your hair to grow back depends on the type of targeted treatment you had ask your medical team for guidance.
Coming Full Circle : Low Dose Oral Minoxidil For Alopecia
I presume that virtually every dermatologist reading this commentary has recommended topical minoxidil for their patients with androgenetic alopecia and other alopecias . I recall the excitement in 1988 when the FDA approved TM for AGA in men and in 1991 for women.
The late dermatologist Guinter Kahn was instrumental in the development of TM. The following is from his obituary: Upjohn originally synthesized minoxidil to treat high blood pressure in the early 1960s. When Charles Chidsey one of the companys consultants working at the University of Colorados medical school noticed that the drug stimulated hair growth, Chidsey went to Dr. Kahn and his medical assistant, Paul Grant. Dr. Kahn was running the schools dermatology department at the time. According to the Miami Herald, Dr. Kahn and Grant eventually developed a topical solution for minoxidil in 1971. In 1986, after a 15-year legal battle with Upjohn, Dr. Kahns name was added to the patent. The pair earned royalties, said to be 2 to 5%, from Upjohns $200 million of wholesale annual revenues from Rogaine in the late 1980s.
Beach asserts that there are 5 practical advantages to LDOM for alopecia Convenience Cosmesis Cost Co-therapy and Compliance . In conclusion, as a dermatologist who was anxiously awaiting the arrival of a proprietary formulation of topical minoxidil decades ago, I am bemused by the fact that LDOM may actually be a reasonable alternative for many alopecia patients.
The Hoxsey Tonic: Cancer Treatment No Hair Loss
Or consider working with a doctor who works with natural, alternative cures for cancer such as the Hoxsey Tonic as a way to avoid losing hair due to chemo. The Hoxsey Tonic is a non-toxic herbal cure for cancer. The Hoxsey Tonic is available at the Biomedical Center right across the U.S. border in Tijuana. Patients who take the Hoxsey Tonic work directly with physicians throughout the treatment process so you dont have to approach cancer treatment at home by yourself if you go this route. The Hoxsey Tonic is a powerful cancer treatment that does not cause hair loss.
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