Cooling the scalp can sometimes prevent or reduce hair loss for people having chemotherapy. It works by reducing the blood flow to the hair follicles, which means that the amount of drugs reaching the hair follicles is also reduced.
The effectiveness of scalp cooling varies depending on the drug and dose used, and from person to person. If you do keep your hair, you may find that it’s patchy or thinner.
In some cultures and religions hair has a particular significance so losing it may affect ones cultural or religious identity. Scalp cooling can also be less effective on African and Caribbean hair, so increased cooling times may be recommended. It may be helpful to discuss this further with your treatment team.
To improve the chances of the cold cap being effective, it’s important the cap covers the whole scalp and fits snugly. Dreadlocks may prevent the cap from achieving a close fit to the scalp.