Why are hair cells more vulnerable to chemotherapy?

Why are hair follicles affected by chemotherapy?

Why does chemotherapy cause hair loss? The reason chemotherapy can cause hair loss is that it targets all rapidly dividing cells — healthy cells as well as cancer cells. Hair follicles, the structures in the skin from which hair grows, include some of the fastest-growing cells in the body.

Which cells are more susceptible to chemotherapy?

The “normal” cells most commonly affected by chemotherapy are the blood cells, the cells in the mouth, stomach and bowel, and the hair follicles; resulting in low blood counts, mouth sores, nausea, diarrhea, and/or hair loss. Different drugs may affect different parts of the body.

Why do chemotherapy drugs affect cells such as hair follicles so strongly?

Often, these drugs cannot distinguish between cancer cells and other rapidly dividing cells in your body. Therefore, because hair cells are some of our most active, fastest-growing cells, they are often attacked and killed by chemotherapy drugs.

Why is hair targeted during cancer treatment?

Chemotherapy. Chemotherapy drugs work by killing growing cells such as cancer cells. But normal body tissues such as the hair follicles, also have lots of growing cells. This is what makes your hair fall out.

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Does hair grow back thinner after chemo?

Hair usually starts to grow back 1 to 3 months after chemotherapy ends. It often takes 6 to 12 months to grow back completely. It may grow back thinner, coarser, curly, or a different color.

What is the fastest growing cell in the human body?

Hair follicles, skin, and the cells that line the gastrointestinal tract are some of the fastest growing cells in the human body, and therefore are most sensitive to the effects of chemotherapy.

Does chemo change your DNA?

Most of chemotherapy types change DNA structure by indirect ways such as inhibition of DNA repairing enzymes or switch off others.

How many rounds of chemo is normal?

You may need four to eight cycles to treat your cancer. A series of cycles is called a course. Your course can take 3 to 6 months to complete. And you may need more than one course of chemo to beat the cancer.

What is the best shampoo to use after chemo?

Use baby shampoo or other mild shampoo (such as Aveeno® or Vanicream). You should also use a cream rinse or hair conditioner. Use shampoos and conditioners that have sunscreen to prevent sun damage to your scalp. Always rinse your hair well and pat it dry with a soft towel.

What side effects does chemotherapy have?

Here are some of the more common side effects caused by chemotherapy:

  • Fatigue.
  • Hair loss.
  • Easy bruising and bleeding.
  • Infection.
  • Anemia (low red blood cell counts)
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Appetite changes.
  • Constipation.