Check your chemo drug regimen with Penguin Cold Caps
Published: October 17, 2022
Taking control of your hair loss
To get through this stressful time, it’s important to find coping mechanisms that help you control the fear, anxiety, and panic. When faced with something frightening, our bodies naturally release adrenalin, which prepares us to run or take flight to escape our situation. But the ancient response that protects us from a predator or intruder can become a problem when it manifests itself in the wrong situations. The more you worry or stress, the more your symptoms are likely to increase, leaving you feeling like you have no control over the cancer.
Hair loss is one of the most common side effects of receiving cancer treatment, which can be challenging for your physical appearance and emotional well-being. But, depending on your drug regimen, this is one side-effect you can do something about and take back control.
Chemotherapy drugs are designed to kill cells with a ‘fast division rate’, such as cancer cells. The cells in our hair bulbs divide every 23 to 72 hours, remarkably faster than any other cell in the body. Unfortunately, chemo drugs can’t tell the difference between hair and cancer cells and inadvertently kill the cells in our hair bulbs too, resulting in hair loss.
A cancer diagnosis is difficult to cope with and feeling anxious and scared about what will happen to you is normal. Your primary fear is likely to be about your chance of survival, which will very much depend on your type of cancer, how advanced your cancer is, and the treatment you have. You might also be worrying about the side effects of your treatment, including hair loss.
With medical advancements and early screening, cancer survival rates have doubled in the last 40 years . At the same time, palliative care and hair loss technologies, such as cold capping, have developed to such an extent that patients have far more choice and greater control than they ever had before.
What is Penguin Cold Cap therapy?
Cold Cap therapy is a non-invasive treatment that is proven to help patients save up to 90% of their hair on chemo. And it really works – see Penguin Cold Cap user stories
A cold cap filled with a specially formulated Crylon Gel reaches super cold temperatures yet remains soft and pliable. This enables the cold cap to fit snugly to the patient’s head and cool their scalp to the optimal temperature. The hair capillaries (blood vessels) around the hair bulbs are cooled into a hibernated state, which stops the hair bulb from absorbing the damaging chemotherapy drugs.
Penguin Cold Caps is a manual system, which means the caps can be fitted very snugly to the head to ensure the whole scalp reaches the right temperature. Machine cooling systems struggle to mould as tightly to the head as a manual system, which is why machine cooling can lead to bald patches. Although some hair loss is expected, with all cold capping systems, users of Penguin Cold Caps do not experience patchy hair loss. Any shedding is evenly spread across the scalp and, therefore, less noticeable.
Penguin patient drug regimens
Because of the snug fit of the cap, Penguin patients have successfully saved their hair on even some of the strongest drug regimens, not normally recommended by other cold cap providers.
Below is a list of just some of the drug regimens patients have achieved success with while using Penguin Cold Caps. If your drug regimen is not listed, please get in touch with our customer service team to find out past success rates for your specific plan.
- TC – Docetaxel (Taxotere), Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
- ACT – Adriamycin (Doxorubicin), Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan), Paclitaxel (Taxol)
- Taxol, Carboplatin
- TCHP – Taxotere (docetaxel), Carboplatin, Herceptin (Trastuxumab), Perjeta (Pertuzumab)
- TH – Paclitaxel (Taxol), Herceptin (trastuxumab)
- AC – Adriamycin (Doxorubicin), Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
- Paclitaxel (Taxol)
- Taxotere (Docetaxel)
- Paclitaxel (Taxol), Herceptin
- TCH – Docetaxel (Taxotere), Carboplatin, Trastuzumab (Herceptin)
- ABVD – Doxorubicin (Adriamycin), Bleomycin, Vinblastine, Dacarbazine
- R-CHOP – Rituximab (Mabthera), Cyclophosphamide, Doxorubicin (Adriamycin), Vincristine (Oncovin), Prednisolone
- Cisplatin, Etoposide
- THE – Taxol, Herceptin, Perjeta
- Taxol, Carboplatin, Avastin
- Cisplatin, Gemcitabine
- TC, Neulasta
- Abraxane, Carboplatin
- Taxotere (docetaxel), Herceptin, Perjeta
- Taxol, Avastin
- Alima, Carboplatin, Keytruda
- BEP- Bleomycin, Etoposide, Platinum agent
- CHOP – Cyclophosphamide, Doxorubicin (Adriamycin), Vincristine (Oncovin), Prednisolone
If you are thinking of cold capping and want to speak to a Penguin rep near you, get in touch, and we’ll arrange for your nearest rep to give you a call.
Not all chemo drugs cause hair loss
You may find that your chemo treatment is unlikely to result in hair loss, but many do. The best way to find out is by talking with your cancer care team. They can tell you if you are likely to lose your hair. If you know your treatment plan, you can request a free consultation with one of our trained representatives – just click on the call-back button the form to request a call-back.
If hair loss is a likely side effect, your medical team or our representative will talk you through your options. How you feel you’ll cope very much depends on what’s important to you. Some people choose to wear a wig or a scarf until their hair grows back, whereas others wear their bald head loud and proud. But many people choose to cold cap, and it’s not usually for the sake of their appearance.
Penguin Cold Caps has helped thousands of people save their hair on chemo. Our customers tell us it is important to save their hair for various reasons:
- They do not want people at work knowing they have cancer
- They were concerned their young children would be worried if mom or dad was sick
- They wanted to kick back at cancer and take control over the disease
Cancer is a very personal journey, and everyone should be free to make the choices that suit them best.
If you have any questions about cold capping, or anything else related to your chemo treatment, why not join the Facebook Chemotherapy Support Group – with thousands of members reaching out to each other, someone will no doubt be able to offer you first hand advice.