CVP and Hair Loss

One of the things that I’ve tried to google, looking for personal accounts, is “CVP and Hair Loss”.  If you read the books, the literature given to you by your doctor, and visit the cancer and lymphoma sites online, you receive a spectrum of information:  hair thinning – hair loss, occurence:  2 weeks – 6 weeks, falling out in clumps vs. gradual thinning.  Of course, chemo will effect everyone differently but it would be nice to hear some personal experiences so that I can put my own situation in prespective.  Hopefully sharing my own experience will be helpful to someone else.

I began R-CVP chemotherapy on March 10, 2008, the first of six cycles occuring every three weeks.  Round 2 occured on March 31, 2008 and April 1, 2008.  On March 31st, while showering, I noticed that I lost more hair than usual, particularly while shampooing and conditioning.  On April 1st, the thinning was about the same and on April 2nd, I estimate that I lost perhaps four times as much hair as I would ordiniarily, prior to chemo.  I haven’t had clumps of hair on my pillow, just general thinning, noticed primarily in the shower.

As you may have read previously in “My Strategy”, I haven’t colored my hair since September and I can’t remember the last time that I had it cut so, at this point, I’d be happy to either see it go or I’d like to get a haircut.  I don’t want to pay for a cut and have it fall out next week, though.  So perhaps it will just thin, rather than losing it all.  I have an appointment on April 10th to deal with whatever is left…….and a #15 blade on my clippers if it comes to that before then.

People often come to my web site via the search engine term “CVP and Hair Loss”.  Updates regarding my hair loss throughout my chemotherapy treatments can be found in my comments below….


13 thoughts on “CVP and Hair Loss

  1. Pingback: CVP and Hair Loss | Hairstyles for Men and Women

  2. I’m in treatment for NHL on R-CHOP chemo (which is basically R-CVP with the addition of Doxorubicin); I had my first treatments March 13 & 14 and my second round March 24 & 25. Thursday the 27th of March I noticed when running my fingers through my hair that I was losing more than normal, but it wasn’t really alarming. Friday the 28th was a different story… I got up to have my shower and while combing conditioner through my hair I combed out what looked like most of the hair on that side of my head. I had a mini-freak out… just a bit shocked I guess that that’s the way it was going to go, and kept combing because I’m a little compulsive.

    I didn’t lose all my hair that day, but I did shave my head because I found the hair loss a little too confronting. I have (had) really thick hair so I still had quite a bit even after the shaving, but it has continued to fall and as of today it’s pretty thin. I haven’t had any eyelash or eyebrow fall though, and I’m pretty grateful for that. We’ll see how I go through… four to six more rounds to go.

  3. April 3rd: Two days after second chemo treatment

    Hair loss about the same as yesterday, perhaps a little bit more. Still just thinning, not coming out in clumps.

  4. Your post brought back memories. My grandaughter, as you know had NHL (five years cancer free now!). Her hair was falling out pretty rapidly within 3 weeks of the first treatment, a week after the second.

    She got disgusted and decided to not wait around (9 year olds are not very patient), went into the shower and scrubbed and pulled all the rest out. Obviously, her hair was loose enough to easily pull out. She emerged from the shower almost completely hairless!!! Her mom freaked, LOL!!

    The eyebrow loss came a bit later but she didn’t lose all of her eyelashes.

  5. April 4th – four days after chemo, 2nd cycle.

    I stood in the shower this morning, gathering my daily pile of hair and decided, “That’s it! I’m gonna see if I can get a hair appointment today.” Fifteen minutes later I was getting waxed and cut and colored……and I felt so much better after I was done. I hadn’t done anything with my hair for 6 months and now my hair is cute and back to it’s natural color! 🙂 I’ll put photos online soon.

  6. April 6th – 6 days after CVP, second cycle

    I’m going to guess that I had the most hair loss this morning. It’s hard to judge because my hair is much shorter now but today’s pile was close in size to the largest so far. I still have plenty of healthy looking, brunette/auburn hair…. 🙂

  7. April 10th – 10 days after CVP, second cycle

    My hair is still thinning but it’s not noticeable. On a positive note, I’ve noticed that I don’t need to shave my legs and underarms every day. Woo Hoo! 🙂

  8. April 18th – 18 days after CVP, second cycle

    I continue to lose hair each day but not as much as I did earlier in this cycle. The third cycle begins on Monday…..we’ll see what happens.

  9. April 26th – 4 days after CVP, third cycle

    Had a noticeable increase in hair loss this morning….perhaps double or three times that of yesterday. On a positive note….I shaved my legs again this morning……out of habit, not necessity.

  10. June 12th –

    After 5 rounds of R-CVP, my hair is thinner, perhaps half of what I had prior to chemo. It’s finer and wispier….but I have hair!….and if you didn’t know me, you probably wouldn’t suspect that I was going through chemo.

    I haven’t lost eyebrows or eyelashes (at least, not that I’ve noticed)….and I haven’t lost those random hairs on my chin either!!! I have lost hair on my legs, or it just doesn’t grow as fast, because I don’t need to shave my legs every day!

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