does hair grow back??

hi, I might not even need treatment after my op, but in this waiting phase what can you do in those quiet moments but gather information. Not worried, just in a need to know the worse mode.

Anyway been reaading about cold caps and hair loss. My hair is very important to me, thinning because of my age anyway.

so my question is, if you do loose it, does it always grow back?? is there any difference in regrowth if you have or have not tried the cold cap?? How long after treatment ends does it start growing??

Any new hair I get at the moment is silver, saving a fortune on streaks as I get older. What color has older ladies hair grown.

I know this is totally hypothetical at the moment, might not even need treatment after the op. I am feeling calm and posative, but it is helping me to stay that way by going on the odd fact finding mission.

Almost all people get their hair back. I don’t know the stats for those whose hair stays absent, perhaps the Helpline will know? I know it’s a very tiny percentage though.

When it grows back it sometimes comes back grey, or a different colour from normal, and often it’s curly for the first centimetre or two, but not always. And those who’ve had changed hair usually find that it returns to its pre-chemo colour, curl and condition after a while.

Personally I don’t care what colour or curliness it is, as long as it DOES, and after FEC4 it seems to be thinking about it, along with all the other bits of hair.

I know just what you mean about wanting to find out about all the possible options, so just you keep on asking questions. As you say, you may not even need to know the answers if you don’t end up needing to have chemo, but at least you feel as if you’re DOING something while sat in The Waiting Room.

Another couple of things to sort out while you’re waiting: get your prescription exemption form sorted at your GP, book yourself onto a Look Good Feel Better session (they get booked up quite early so get in there now) and find out if there’s a support centre near you, and go in and visit. You might even find yourself having a massage or two, depending on what’s on offer.

gosh some good advice there.

already got an exemtion cos of my thyroid problem.

dont think i am the sort to go into a support center, but trying to get a hair appointment and will definately go and get a manicure and pedicure before the op.

I have booked three sessions with my accupuncture doctor, he says he can do lots to strenghten my body in preperation for the op, and to help with healing afterwards. Says chinese medicine cannot do anything to the cancer cells, but can help your body cope with what is happening.

If you do go for other things on top of what you’ve already been prescribed, such as herbalist preparations or Chinese medicine, please make sure you let your onc know, as they can interact and affect the efficacy of your conventional treatment.

For example, St John’s Wort is often used for depression - a natural substance so can’t do any harm, surely? Well it does interact with conventional anti-d’s, has a similar effect to Fluoxetine, so could potentially affect Tamoxifen absorption. So your onc needs to know EVERYTHING else you’re taking, even vitamin pills.

good idea. If i get herbs off my chinese guy i will ask him to write down what they are so that i can hand it in on my pre op assessment. (another needle!!!)

Interesting questions OAL - my hair has grown back twice (after FEC and TAX that I’ve had to have separately) - seems to grow back darker than the original hair with less grey too (at 59 I had quite a bit of grey…). I did not a cold cap so can’t comment of it’s effectiveness. Hair started to grow back to me towards the end of the treatments and that includes eyebrows, eyelashes etc etc

Just to say the first time it came out I was quite taumatized like most people but now just accept the new me and if the treatments work that’s my priority. I’ve had fun buying hats and scarves and have used the money saved from shampoos and haircuts on these. When mine started to fall out it was very messy so I got it shaved off and was sponsored by work colleagues for BCC and felt much better about doing something good out of something that was really troubling me.

Hope these thoughts help

i was wondering if I have to go down that road wether to get it cut short and use my own hair for a fringe piece or something to go under a hat. Actually if a fringe piece could look good on my hair after it grew back it would be useful when performing. My fringe is quite thin and the old thin bits of hair stuck to a sweaty forhead look has never been good.

Youngandfunky, You’d probably be better of buying one rather than trying to have one made. They’re very reasonably priced and the range of colours, styles etc is excellent. On top of the price for using your own hair (huge) there’s the time needed to do it (ages) by which time you’d be out the other side of treatment.

I finished my 6 chemos (last three with Herceptin) on April 1st this year and have a covering of quarter centimeter length hairs over most of my head - but still bald patches around my temple. The colour can’t be classified (it depends on the light). Much slower growth than I expected, but I am bored with hats and never had a wig - so go around with nothing on my head - and, guess what? no one cares! Even in Tesco or in the post office queue. I wish I’d been more confident earlier (you can even look quite edgy with sunglasses and no hair).

So, I am hoping hair grows back and that as ChoccieMuffin says I am one of the ‘most’ whose hair grows back properly.


I am an older lady and my hair was silvery grey before chemo. When it started coming out I took the clippers to it and my husband for some reason best know to himself kept it in a box. I lost my hair while on AC chemo and it started coming back slowly on Tax. It took longer to regrow than I wanted but it did eventually grow back completely. We recently compared my hair now to my pre chemo hair and they are exactly the same colour.

The only hair related problem that I am left with concerns my eyebrows. I lost them and my eyelashes. The lashes have grown OK but the brows are very sparse.

Good luck Young One


I dont have eyebrows anyway, I have to have a tattoo,( not fun with my needle problems) my eyelashes are forever falling out and regrowing, probably as my thyroid levels change, me and the medics never agree about what the thyroxine dose should be.

trouble with loosing the hair for me would be that it covers my saggy jawline and serpant like neck, not to mention the brow furrows and stooped shoulders. a wig would be too hot when drumming.

oh well, lets put this to one side, I might not evan have to go there

Hi O and L

I am absolutely sure that you are exaggerating your perceived faults. To do what you do(yes I have watched the you tube clip) you must have confidence in spades. As you say you may not have to go there but if you should you will cope - we all do.


Hello - hope you don’t mind me joining in! When I found out I had to have chemo I looked into semi perm. makeup. I’d always “overplucked” and had that “SUPRISED” look so what the hell I went for it. Anyway found a fabulous lady called Jeni Watson (ex nurse -Oncology, Gyno, burns) who owns Dermaticians in Cambridge. She knows all about H&S, infections etc. Even tattoos nipples after recon etc. The treatment was painless and she gave me a discount because of diagnosis. It seemed a silly and trivial thing to do at such a traumatic time -everyone thought I’d gone mad - but I’m glad I did it.
Bestest x

IT’s not silly and trivial if it’s happening to you though, I bet they’d do it in a heartbeat if they started losing their eyebrows, I know I’d like to have it done before Taxotere starts, but can’t afford it unfortunately, I’ve heard it’s a couple of hundred pounds is that right?


I too have no eyebrows post tax but head hair came back fine.There is a member [pineapple?] in France who had permanent hair loss but that is very very rare.
my underarm hair stayed away too but everywhere else is normalish[bit sparse].I finished chemo May 2007.


Good on ya, Bubbles! If it works for you then that’s just fine.

YoungAndFunky, having a bald woman drummer could be really edgy for your band, so don’t worry about the lack of hair. Stick on a stern expression on your face and look scary, could be a great new image for you! Seriously though, if you don’t want to do the wig thing, take a look at some of the bandanas and stuff that are out there. has a great range, from the square ones you fold yourself to pre-done ones with all sorts of patterns and colours and lots of different fabrics, to Buffs, which I absolutely love.

I’ve also got a couple of really loose weave long scarves that look quite good and because they’re such loose weave have NO warmth in them at all, so would probably be quite good for covering your head without boiling you. I usually just wear them round my neck though - the one I’ve got on at the moment is black with skull and crossbones on it! £6 from some shop in Farnham, but I like it.

another place to get stuff from is very good cheep too and very fast delivery gave me some good ways to wear them and make them look less plain

I started to loose my hair after my second FEC, had to wear a hat to bed, what a mess. I looked like a Sasquatch when I got out of bed with all the hair stuck to me. My husband had great fun shaving it off for me, he did his too. I got a wig on the NHS and bought hats and scarves but couldn’t stand wearing any of them because I felt so hot and I was having flushes. So one day I took the plunge and ventured out with nothing on my head. I went to Tesco with my hubby, we must have looked a sight both with shaved heads :slight_smile: I was so surprised to find that people didn’t take much notice and now I feel comfortable and even forget I have no hair until I catch my reflection in a mirror. It feels quite liberating and cools me down when I get a flush.

It started to grow really quickly just before my last Chemo. I shaved it again on the weekend though because it was really fluffy baby like hair so I’ll keep it short until healthy hair grows, although it’s grown again since. I think it the same color it was before and it seems to be straight like before. I didn’t know how I’d feel when it came out but now I’m enjoying having short hair, I never liked having to try to do my hair to go out, I’m too lazy so it’s great. I save a lot of money on hair cuts and shampoo too :slight_smile: Although everyone feels the need to rub my head for some reason? Maybe that’s why it’s growing to fast all the stimulation :slight_smile:

I was in the post office the other day, there was a little boy with his Mum and I could see him looking at me with a puzzled look on his face. He came up to me and said “Why haven’t you got any hair?” Kids are so funny, they say what everyone else just thinks. His Mother looked so embarrassed, but I though it was funny. It’s good to have a sense of humor about these things. :slight_smile:

Emma x

Glad you enjoyed the utube of my band. I thought it was a fun thing to show what i did and why drumming is so important to me, but the moderaters have deleted all the links. they say it was advertising. I say it was showing what old ladies can do if they set their minds to it.


if anyone wants a link please message me apparantly thats allowed.

hi OaL - sorry the link has gone; I just took it as you sharing “you” and really enjoyed the link but guess some posters might have had other intentions… hope you get back to enjoying drumming soon.