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SABCS 2018 /
Scalp cooling to prevent chemotherapy induced alopecia in breast cancer patients

4th - 8th Dec 2018

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Published: 11.12.18
Views: 3083

Professors Hope Rugo, Debu Tripathy, Nadia Harbeck and Dr Steven Isakoff

Professors Hope Rugo, Debu Tripathy, Nadia Harbeck and Dr Steven Isakoff meet in San Antonio at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium 2018 annual conference for an educational breast cancer panel discussion. Their talk covers scalp cooling to prevent chemotherapy induced alopecia in breast cancer patients.

Professor Rugo chairs the discussion, opening by asking Dr Isakoff to comment on the issues that breast cancer patients may face as a result of their treatment options. Isakoff outlines how hair loss is a critical issue for many patients, with a portion even declining chemotherapy treatment to avoid this, and how the introduction of scalp cooling was a patient driven management practice.

Professor Harbeck elaborates on this point detailing the chemotherapy induced alopecia management practices available in Germany and the importance of educating and involving the nurses on the decision to run these programmes.

Professor Rugo then explains the two different types of scalp cooling devices that are currently available, and the key differences between them.

She then directs the conversation to Dr Isakoff, asking him to comment on his use of scalp cooling devices in the metastatic setting. He elaborates that it has even been used past this for the treatment of gynaecological patients.

The panel then discuss the challenges that are faced with scalp cooling and the success of the device when used to manage anthracycline induced hair loss, before commenting on the use of a scalp cooling device to encourage hair re-growth during and after alopecia.

Prof Rugo then asks Prof Harbeck to comment on the incidence of scalp metastases when using scalp cooling devices, with reference to the data presented at SABCS. It is outlined that there is currently no evidence to suggest that this is an issue, and the risk is theoretical.

The discussion then turns to the efficacy of scalp cooling devices with docetaxel, before summarising the need for reimbursement in Germany, and the various support programmes available in the US.

The talk is summarised by detailing the importance of scalp cooling in improving the quality of patients’ lives and the need for improved education and access to scalp cooling devices.

Treatment-induced issues encountered by breast cancer patients
Scalp cooling in the clinic
Versatility of scalp cooling
Scalp cooling successes
Efficacy of scalp cooling in combination with anthracycline
Incidence of scalp metastases
Efficacy of scalp cooling in combination with docetaxel
Accessibility of scalp cooling


This programme has been supported by an unrestricted educational grant from Paxman Scalp Cooling 

Previous conferences: highlights

Founding partners

European Cancer Organisation European Institute of Oncology

Founding Charities

Foundazione Umberto Veronesi Fondazione IEO Swiss Bridge

Published by

ecancer Global Foundation