29 February 2012

Hair After Cancer

Although modern cancer treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy have saved a considerable number of lives, they can also be detrimental to multiple systems in the body and have many unpleasant side effects and often almost unbearable. A side effect best known and most physically visible of cancer treatment damage and hair loss. Even after full recovery from cancer, many survivors remain frustrated and disappointed, as their hair grows back, because they do not have that healthy look and shine it.

There are several important factors that contribute to long-term damage of cancer being treated hair. Although all these factors can be addressed and overcome, attention cancer treated hair will become an ongoing effort that requires a small amount of understanding and knowledge to be effective. The first thing that must be understood is that cancer treatments, not only physical damage hair, but also organs and systems that, indirectly, its application.

Cancer treatment will cause damage to the physics itself by damaging the hair follicles, sebaceous glands, and affecting the body's ability to synthesize proteins vital to provide growth, strength, and structure. The hair that has undergone cancer treatment is generally porous and uneven scale patterns of proteins in the cuticle. This protein in the cuticle is uneven which creates the characteristic frizzy or unmanageable sometimes.

A particular protein that cancer treatments tend to make is tyrosine. Tyrosine is of particular importance to human hair as it regulates the production of melanin. Melanin is the pigment of the hair natural hair color and also helps to "hold" on the artificial color. Without sufficient protein tyrosine, the hair has a hard time maintaining hair color and artificial dyes often fade quickly.

Damage to sebaceous glands will disrupt or diminish the ability of these tiny glands found in the human scalp to produce sebum. Sebum is the natural moisturizer of human hair and without it, it will become dry and lifeless. Dry hair also tends to be thinner, which adds to the appearance of thinning cancer survivors.

The most significant complaint of cancer survivors is that their hair is thin. Although cancer treatment may have killed some follicles leading to thinning, it is often not the key factor contributing to this feature. Most of the follicles, especially women, who stop production are not really dead, but are merely dormant. Dormant follicles to give the best chance of recovery from the use of all plastics or other impurities that can clog follicles should be avoided.

The best course of action for people who have been treated for cancer is to seek the services of a professional salon specializing in hair care cancer treated.