The effect of scalp cooling system by penguin cold cap therapy system in preventing chemotherapy induced alopecia in cancer patients, Shiraz-2004


Marziyeh Kargar 1 , * , Habib Noorani Khojasteh 2

1 Instructor, Departments of Nursing, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

2 Associated professor, Internal Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

How to Cite: Kargar M, Noorani Khojasteh H. The effect of scalp cooling system by penguin cold cap therapy system in preventing chemotherapy induced alopecia in cancer patients, Shiraz-2004, Hormozgan Med J. 2005 ; 9(1):e90296.


Hormozgan Medical Journal: 9 (1); e90296
Published Online: July 22, 2005
Article Type: Research Article
Received: July 08, 2004
Accepted: July 22, 2005


Introduction: Alopecia has been established as the most bothersome aspect of
preoperative chemotherapy. Some patients even refrain from cytotoxic treatment.
This is an experimental study evaluating the efficiency of scalp cooling system
preventing chemotherapy induced alopecia in cancer patients in an oncology
clinic in Shiraz, Iran.
Methods: A total number of 63 (male / female, 23/40) patients participated in the
study and (mean age=35Y) (16-59) were treated every 3 weeks for six weeks
with an Ivregimen of chemotherapy drug. 31 patients accepting the scalp-cooling
system were compared for alopecia with those who refused the scalp cooling
system consisting of 32 patients similarly treated but without being offered a
scalp cooling system. Hair loss in the patients was evaluated by nurses using
World Health Organization (WHO) criteria at each cycle of chemotherapy.
Results: In this study, the differences between the two groups were statistically
significant at cycles 2-6 (p<0.05). Tolerance was generally good. In the study
group in the 2nd cycle, 77.4% of the patients belonged to 1st and 2nd grade of
alopecia. No 4th grade was observed in the group. However, in the control group
in the same cycle, 61.3% of the patients were in the 3rd and 4th grade of alopecia.
Also, in the 6th cycle 40% of the study group and 68.8% of the control group
showed the 4th grade of alopecia.
Conclusion: In the long-run, the patient is spared the tedious search for and
expense of a wig or other forms of head coverings. Ultimately damage to hair
follicle cells is minimized, hair loss is prevented or significantly reduced and the
patient’s self image is maintained. Therefore, diminishing the pernicious effects
the penguin cold cap therapy has proven highly successful. But it is important to
remind the patients that it is not successful in all cases and this depends on the
individual characteristics, liver function, and drug regimen.



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