One of the most difficult aspects of having cancer is being treated with chemotherapy and dealing with its side effects. Specifically, hair loss seems to add insult to injury and is said to be one of the most devastating parts of being a cancer patient because it is a daily reminder and a clear sign to others that says, “I’m sick. I have cancer.” Doctors and researchers realize this and put their efforts toward providing some relief to their patients.
Frank Fronda of Medical Specialties of California UK Ltd. (MSC) has come up with a creative solution to many cancer patients’ first question when told they have cancer and should seek chemotherapy for treatment. “Am I going to lose my hair?” Now thanks to Fronda’s research and creation of the Cold Cap, the answer to that question could be “You just might not!”
The Cold Cap is a Crylon gel filled, tight-fitting cap designed for scalp cooling. Due to the cold temperature of the cap (-15 to -40 degrees Fahrenheit), the hair follicles shrink, reducing the amount of blood cells and, therefore, also the amount of chemotherapy drugs able to reach the scalp. This in turn can reduce the amount of hair loss throughout the duration of chemotherapy.
But how do these caps get so cold? A regular freezer can’t do the trick and while some facilities have a biomedical freezer, they are not readily available in every cancer treatment center across the U.S. or around the world. Where biomedical freezers are not available, dry ice is a good alternative. In this case, finding a dry ice distributor nearest to you becomes the best available alternative.
Continental Carbonic Products, Inc. has 40 locations east of the Rocky Mountains. You can use our Dry Ice Locator to help you find the one closest to you here. By purchasing dry ice for your Cold Cap, you will have access to the extreme cold you need to freeze your Cold Cap and keep your hair!
Cold Caps must be worn before, during, and after chemotherapy treatments. They need to be switched every 20-30 minutes to keep the scalp at the optimum temperature, so make sure you talk to our branch managers about how much dry ice you will need for each treatment.
We understand that cancer, its treatment and side effects are not only on the minds of the patient but also on those of their friends and families. With this in mind, we found a few resources (below) for you to pass on to or to learn how to help your relative or friend reduce the amount of hair loss during chemotherapy.