Cooling caps reduce hair loss in chemo patients, study finds

A cooling cap worn during chemotherapy treatments may help prevent hair loss in breast cancer patients, according to a new study presented Friday at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.

The cap restricts blood flow to the head, thereby limiting the amount of chemotherapy that reaches the scalp and harms hair follicles, reports Los Angeles Times.

In the study — sponsored by the cap's creator Paxman Cooling — women with Stage 1 or 2 breast cancer wore the caps during chemotherapy, as well as for 30 minutes before and 90 minutes after treatment.

Of the 95 women randomly assigned to use a cooling cap, 51 percent maintained their hair after four rounds of chemotherapy. All 47 women assigned to the study's control group lost their hair after four rounds of treatment.

The results were so positive, the study's data safety and monitoring board decided to stop the trial early and release the results, according to the report.

The study authors, from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, plan to follow the patients for five years to examine whether the reduction in chemotherapy to their head allows their cancer to spread to their scalps, according to the report. Researchers will also track the women's overall survival.

The Food and Drug Administration is currently reviewing the cap, called the Orbis Paxman Hair Loss Prevention System, for potential FDA approval. A similar product called the DigniCap Scalp Cooling system earned FDA approval last December.

More articles on clinical quality:

Redesigned drug packaging can improve patient safety, study suggests
Gordon Hospital's clothing drive provides back-up garments to patients in need
New Hampshire hospitals report 64 'never events' in 2015

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