REDUCING hair loss for chemotherapy patients is the aim of a pioneering project at a Coventry hospital.
Annie Young, a nursing professor at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire, is one of six cancer care experts launching the database for the initiative, which will be used to establish effective methods for scalp cooling.
A new website, scalpcooling.org will serve as a global hub for patients and care providers seeking information about the treatment.
Professor Young, who works for Cancer-related Hair Loss, International Leadership and Linkage (CHILL), announced an initiative to collect and track evidence-based patient information and clinical guidance on cancer related hair loss at the Multinational Association of Supportive Care in Cancer (MASCC) conference in Washington, USA,
She said: “Hair loss in patients having chemotherapy can be devastating on top of cancer treatment. Our patients want to use scalp cooling and we need to ensure best practices are developed to improve patients’ quality of life and make it accessible to all.”
CHILL has designed an online registry which makes communication and global research accessible to all health care professionals interested in using scalp cooling therapeutics with their chemotherapy patients.
It also collects data about severity of hair loss of patients with and without scalp cooling.
For patients undergoing treatment with scalp cooling technology, physicians can gather information on tolerance and satisfaction with the results of treatment.
CHILL Chairperson Dr. Corina van den Hurk said: “The launch of the CHILL Registry is a significant step forward as we work together to develop best practices in patient care.”
A recent study of breast cancer patients using the DigniCap and Paxman scalp cooling devices found that the majority of patients achieved ‘favourable results’ from scalp cooling treatments.
The scalp cooling medical device features a tight-fitting silicone cooling cap placed directly on the head, and an outer neoprene cap which insulates and secures the silicone cap.
The cooling cap is connected to a cooling and control unit. A liquid coolant circulates throughout the silicone cap, delivering consistent and controlled cooling to all areas of the scalp.
Once the cap is fitted to the head, the temperature of the scalp is lowered to be just above freezing temperature to reduce the level of chemotherapy sent to the scalp.
The CHILL Registry is funded by Dignitana, who produce The DigniCap Scalp Cooling System and Paxman Coolers, producers of the Paxman Scalp Cooler.