Having been diagnosed with breast cancer in July 2015, my world had suddenly and abruptly collapsed. Cancer was not welcome, it hadn’t been invited and I was going to make sure it was kicked in the butt and evicted ASAP!
My gruelling schedule for the following months was decided on. I was to have a mastectomy with an immediate breast reconstruction, followed by several rounds of chemotherapy. I thought to myself, “Cancer you picked on the wrong girl, you’ve got a fight on your hands.”
My mission began. Mastectomy – tick. Breast Reconstruction – tick. Chemotherapy...how on earth was I going to endure this? I had no choice but to lose a boob to cancer, but with the definite hair loss and subsequent sorrow that I would have to bear due to my chemotherapy, I did have one choice. It was the Paxman cold cap!
Although I felt extremely fearful and timid, I was equipped with information about my chemotherapy regime and Paxman provided everything I needed to know about scalp cooling. I attended my first chemotherapy appointment. I thought, “I’m going to try the Paxman cold cap, because I’ve got nothing to lose except my hair.”
The nurse assigned to me explained everything and made sure I was completely satisfied to proceed. My new fashion accessory (not a Chanel handbag for sure!) was a close-fitting bright pink cap that, with some perseverance and good fortune, would save my hair.
I dampened my hair with water and covered it in a gentle conditioner. The cap was perfectly fitted to my head size, the chin-strap tightly fastened and I was ready for the big ‘switch on’. It was cold, extremely cold, but with my mind focused on beating cancer, booting it out of my life and saving my hair, 10 to 15 minutes later it felt okay. It was still cold but I was determined and it was manageable.
Throughout the 4 or so hours I was wearing my little pink number, my head felt cool and my body felt chilled. But with a blanket, a few hot chocolates, a positive attitude and a few giggles I found it tolerable, bearable and above all, totally endurable.
Each of my chemotherapy cocktail sessions thereafter followed the same format and now, 7 weeks after completing my final one, I can proudly say that I have kept 90% of my beautiful hair… my hair! YIPPEE! My hair doesn’t look any different and I still look like me – which is what I wished and prayed for.
As recommended for a few weeks post-chemo/cold cap, I will continue to use gentle shampoo and conditioner on my hair, which is absolutely fine because I HAVE HAIR!
The Paxman cold cap worked for me…thank you.