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5 May 2022

Frimley Health has taken delivery of three new machines that can reduce hair loss during chemotherapy, enabling us to offer the treatment to significantly more patients annually.

The new Paxman machines at Frimley Park replace the older, bulkier equipment that its chemotherapy day unit had been using since 2013. With the ability to treat two patients simultaneously, staff can now provide the scalp cooling treatment to more patients.

Scalp cooling is offered to all our suitable patients undergoing chemotherapy. It cools the scalp to between 1C and 3C, decreasing blood flow to the area so that less chemotherapy medication reaches the hair follicles.

While this doesn’t always stop hair loss completely, it can significantly reduce it and encourages healthier hair regrowth too.

Carol, 61, was diagnosed with breast cancer in November 2021 and is undergoing chemotherapy following surgery. She has been using the scalp cooling therapy in her first four sessions and intends to keep using it until the end of her treatment.

She said: “At the half-way point of my treatment I’m really pleased that I’ve still got most of my hair. It’s definitely thinned a little, but I think it’s much better than it would have been had I not gone ahead with the scalp cooling.

“Your hair is a really big part of your identity – the thought of losing my hair was actually really heart breaking. It’s brilliant to hear that now more patients are going to be able to benefit from this treatment.”

Claire James, chemotherapy day unit matron, said: “Previously demand for scalp cooling has always exceeded our capacity to provide it. These new machines will be a big step forward in being able to put patient experience at the centre of everything we do and make sure that patients receive the personalised care they deserve.”

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