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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 277-282

Scalp Cooling in Daily Clinical Practice for Breast Cancer Patients Undergoing Curative Chemotherapy: A Multicenter Interventional Study

1 Unit of Medical Oncology, Carpi Civil Hospital, Carpi, Medicine Department, Local Health Unit, Modena, Italy
2 Oncology Unit, Guastalla Civil Hospital, Guastalla, Medicine Department Local Healt Unit, Reggio Emilia, Italy
3 Oncology Unit, Parma Hospital, University of Parma, Parma, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Giorgia Razzini
Unit of Medical Oncology, Carpi Civil Hospital, Carpi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/apjon.apjon_4_19

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Objective: Chemotherapy-induced alopecia is a common and distressful side effect, especially among breast cancer patients. Scalp cooling (SC) can reduce hair loss during anthracycline- and taxane-based chemotherapy. This study assessed the effectiveness of SC in daily clinical practice in three Italian oncology units. Methods: From 2014 to 2016, we prospectively included 220 female early-stage breast cancer patients undergoing curative chemotherapy in combination with SC using the Paxman device. Effectiveness was defined as the severity of hair loss according to the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events Version 4.0 as follows: Grade 0, no hair loss; Grade 1, <50% hair loss not requiring a wig; and Grade 2, ≥50% hair loss at each cycle and at completion of chemotherapy. The tolerability and safety were also evaluated. Results: The overall success rate of SC (hair loss Grade 0–1) was 68%. Severe hair loss was avoided in 89% of women receiving taxane-based chemotherapy and in 78% of women receiving both anthracyclines and taxanes. Among women undergoing anthracycline-based chemotherapy, 47% experienced hair preservation. SC was well tolerated, as only 20 patients discontinued SC for reasons other than hair loss. Conclusions: Our study confirmed that SC provides a reliable chance for breast cancer patients to keep their hair during taxane- and/or anthracycline-based chemotherapy.

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