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Topic: Hair Hair Hair - Another question

Forum: Chemotherapy - Before, During, and After —

Regimens, side effects, and support from others going through chemo.

Posted on: Jun 15, 2008 09:16AM

Deen wrote:

Hi All,

I know that there have been several threads on this, but I'm asking the question again: on average, when did your hair start growing back in after chemo?????

I'm 4 weeks out from my last AC and any positive encouragement (and "you're almost there" posts) would really make this week wonderful.

Deen.

Life's tough, get a helmet. Dx 1/2008, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/35 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 17, 2008 10:31AM BMac wrote:

Artsee, I hear ya sister.  I'm not into the grey either.  Just because I'm 55 doesn't mean I have to look it!  I think I need a little bit more length and then I'll give it a try.

Thanks.

Barbara Dx 10/23/2007, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, 1/13 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Jun 17, 2008 10:34AM kimbly wrote:

Waiting for the hair to grow back is the most frustrating thing ever don't you think.  I mean I finished chemo end of March and although my head is now mostly covered it is oh so very short still.  Longer in back and stubbly on top (which I am happy about believe me because I had some really bald spots for awhile)  I have coloured with a temporary colour already and that has helped me feel better, having so much white and colourless hair was so wierd to me.  I am naturally dark ( well *cough* with help now with all that peppery gray at my old age of 46, LOL ) I had surgery end of April and my  hair growth then stalled for a few weeks.  I just want it long enough to go without my wig in public.  I do wear a baseball cap out for exercising and yardwork etc but that is about that.  I am way too vain I guess. My hair always grew fast pre cancer/chemo so it would be nice if that is still true!  I have bought a magazine with short hairstyles in it and am planning my step by step cuts to where I want to get back to.. Suz It looks as if you you have more hair than I do and our chemo seems to be around the same time ( I started Dec 15 and ended March 28, although I had did Taxol, Carbo and herceptin). 

As far as eyebrows and lashes.. mine also did not thin out until after chemo was done.  My eyebrows filled in again very quickly but my lashes are taking their time.  I still have some but they thinned so much it's hard to get mascara to look normal.  I have purchased sephora brand false eyelashes but haven't used them yet. Don't really intend to unless for a special occasion.  

I am going to go look for athat hair thread now...

I also inspect my head every day for growing progress...

Dx 11/21/2007, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Jun 17, 2008 10:38AM LorenaB wrote:

I find that when my head is not covered I am touching it constantly, feeling for evidence of growth, hoping that the smooth spots have shrunk.... Besides the fact that I hate glimpsing myself in the mirror bare-headed, this is one reason why I generally wear a bandana at home, I just get so obsessed with this.  At least here at work I have my "wiglet" (half-wig) and hat on so I can't be checking my head all the time!

Dx 12/20/2007, IDC, 1cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 1/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 17, 2008 10:52AM wetcoast wrote:

Hi Deen,

I'm with you on the fluff. I did dd ac then taxol. My fluff started coming back after the second taxol on my head and I look like woodstock from charlie brown. I was a blonde before this journey but cannot tell if it's blonde or gray at the moment. I have maybe three eye lashes and that many eyebrows. My daughter tells me you get new eyelashes every 28 days so almost there. I have been done chemo now for 4 weeks exactly. For the most part I have gone topless and have been told I have a nice shaped head. Lots of sun right now so a hat is in the cards. Look forward to hair even a flaming red with unmanagable curls.

hugs laurel

dx dec 11/07 1.7 cm stage 1 grade 3 er pr her neg, lymph node neg
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Jun 17, 2008 08:44PM artsee wrote:

Hi Laurel...If anybody would tell me that I've got a nice shaped head

I'd have to tell them " Thanks  a heap, but if your trying to make me feel good, IT"S NOT WORKING!"

I hope the 28 days of new lashes is correct. I haven't lost all of the but there are spaces. I put on brow pencil this morning and I keep getting hairs stuck to the pencil . Oh mercy will it ever end?

Artsee

Dx 1/15/2008, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 1/15/2008, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 2/6/2008 Lumpectomy: Right Hormonal Therapy 5/13/2008 Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy Chemotherapy AC + T (Taxotere)
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Jun 17, 2008 09:59PM - edited Jun 17, 2008 10:03PM by susan5783

I finished chemo (taxotere, carboplating and herceptin)  one month ago and am seeing no signs of any hair growth except for some thin white fuzz that I have had all along and that  resembles a brillo pad.   it's pretty discouraging.  Also about 1/2 of my eyelashes fell out after the last chemo. 

was hoping I could ditch my wig soon, since it is getting so hot, but I'm not brave enough to be bald in public.  

I also started Herceptin and was wondering if that might be slowing the hair growth.   

dx 12/22/07, Stage 1, Grade 3, 1.2 cm.  ER+, HER2+ 

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Jun 17, 2008 11:12PM wetcoast wrote:

Artsee, I can handle the nice shaped head ok, it was when the 4 year old little girl asked her mom how come that man doesn't have any hair comment set me on my butt. Kids say the dardest things don't they. All you can do is laugh.

dx dec 11/07 1.7 cm stage 1 grade 3 er pr her neg, lymph node neg
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Jun 18, 2008 12:13AM fish wrote:

I haven't started any chem yet, (next week I see the OC doctor to talk about it) but can everyone tell me about when they lost or started to loose hair?  That and the port are my two biggest fears at this time.........

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Jun 18, 2008 08:03AM collector wrote:

My hair started to go on Day 14 of my first chemo with T/C.  It was coming out in clumps on Day 17 so I cut the rest off and then had my husband shave it.  I am now Day 10 of second chemo and the stubble is still there in patches.  I had a port inserted 4 days prior to my first treatment.  It is much easier than having them poke and poke to find veins.  At least I don't come home bruised and sore from needle sticks.  Inserting the port was no big deal for me and it seems to be healing OK except I found out I am very sensitive to the adhesive they used to seal the port site for 24 hours after surgery.  Something I need to watch in the future.  It's normal to feel fearful and I think most people find the hair loss very traumatic.  I was no different and since the wig I bought makes me look even more ridiculous, I just wear my bandannas or a baseball cap or knit cap.  Good luck to you.

Dx 4/10/2008, ILC, 2cm, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 09:32AM NancyD wrote:

Artsee, try using a brow powder...it's not as rough on the fragile hairs. 

This morning I was doing my brows and a spec of the powder dropped off and feel into the area between my eye and brow. I didn't see it happen and when I saw it I thought my brows were started to regrow and it was one of the new hairs coming in! I was so excited until I touched it. Then I realized what it was Frown

Nothing growing south of my noggin, yet. 

Life is good. It's not perfect. but it's good. Dx 2/22/2008, IDC, Left, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 4/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/21/2008 Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 7/10/2008 Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right Hormonal Therapy 8/31/2008 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 9/4/2008 Breast, Lymph nodes Surgery 1/27/2010 Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap
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Jun 18, 2008 09:42AM Deen wrote:

Fish: started losing hair day 16 - shaved it all off within 2 days (couldn't bare the bit's and pieces hairloss).

Ahh the fuzz. I guess, as others have said, this is the first stage.  I just wish the next one would hurry up already.  I start teaching again at in August and want hair by then!!!!!  

Kimbly - I'm having surgery next week, and you made me realize that this may effect my hair growth.  Didn't think of that before and not happy.

I am literally like a 5 year old, constantly checking for changes. So Laure, I'm with you.  If I didn't keep a cap on my head I'd be endlessly stroking my scalp (found myself doing that at the dinner table tonight. Ha)

Happy growth all

Life's tough, get a helmet. Dx 1/2008, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/35 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 09:46AM Deen wrote:

btw - I'm with you Nancy.  Nothing growin' anywhere.  And, I just took my makeup off and lost another 4 eyelashes.  At this point, I'm scared I will lose them all.  It's a tug of war as to whether to wear makeup or not - on the one hand it makes me look more human, but on the other (and in the long run) it's going to make me lose more lashes.  What to do ....

Life's tough, get a helmet. Dx 1/2008, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/35 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 10:00AM kalyla wrote:

I finished 4x a/c and am half way through 4x Taxol. The onco nurse said my hair would start to grow back soon, because it's only the a/c that makes it fall out, not the Taxol. But the literature I've read on taxol said "thin and brittle hair" se's just like the a/c. So which is it? Will my hair start to grow soon?

Kalyla Dx 2/12/2008, IDC, 6cm+, Stage IV, Grade 3, 22/27 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 11:25AM - edited Jun 18, 2008 11:26AM by otter

Deen, from what I've heard, you can't "make" your lashes fall out by messing with them, or keep them from falling out by not messing with them.  If the hair roots detach, they are going to fall out--they won't re-stick just 'cause you're not tugging on them.

My lashes are thin, but my brow hairs are still in there really tight, 14 days past my last (4th) tx with Taxotere/Cytoxan.  I'm a realist, though--from what I've heard here, I'll probably lose them sooner or later.

I don't know about Taxol.  My onco "guaranteed" me that I would lose all my hair on TC.  I don't know how much of that was because of the T versus the C.

otter

Dx 2008, IDC, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 11:36AM LorenaB wrote:

Ditto what Otter said re: eyelashes.  I stopped wearing mascara until the woman at the "Look Good, Feel Better" class said that was just a myth.

My eyebrows are looking really strange.  They were thick to begin with so even though they have thinned considerably, if I fill in the spaces with pencil they look pretty normal.  Now it seems like some hairs are still falling out, but there is also some regrowth, so they just look all messy. Tongue out

Dx 12/20/2007, IDC, 1cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 1/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 01:22PM chj127 wrote:

Nice to know that I'm not the only one obsessed with my hair (or lack thereof).  But I'm in a "who gives a rat's tail" mood about how I look, so I'm sporting a very, very short and sparse 'do.  And I just don't care - well, maybe a little, but at least it feels better than the wig & hats.

About the eyelashes - I found during my first bout with chemo that it wasn't the mascara that caused them to fall out, but trying to remove the mascara pulled them out.  My eyelashes were "loose" (they would come out easily, same as my eyebrows) but if I didn't disturb them, they were a lot more likely to stay put.  My eyebrows are starting to fill in, and I'm 6 weeks past my last chemo.

I did lose more of my hair with AC (like, 100%) last time vs. TC this time, when I think I really only lost about 90%.  I also think that the majority of the sprouts I'm sporting now are the 10% that I never really lost.  And, what's up with all the gray???  I didn't sign up for that...

CHJ

Dx 10/26/2007, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 1/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 18, 2008 08:06PM - edited Jun 18, 2008 08:07PM by artsee

CHJ...You are absolutely right about the lashes. I stopped wearing mascara the minute my onco said to stop and I'd keep them. It's all about tugging on them when washing. I have to say I have 90 % of my lashes. Now the brows are a different story. I tug on them when putting on eyebrow pencil and they come out.Rats!

I was out to lunch this noon and we sat outside under an umbrella to eat and as I talked with friend I was stoking my leg and looked at them in the sunlight Cool....Guess what? I do believe this girl has got to shave her legs. I don't know when they popped up, but it happened.Yea! Never did I think I'd be excited about shaving legs. So...there's hope girls. My peach fuzz seems to be getting a little thicker too. It's pretty white. Hope I can keep the color bottle off of it a while. HA!Laughing

Do the "grow" dance ladies.....Artsee

Dx 1/15/2008, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 1/15/2008, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 2/6/2008 Lumpectomy: Right Hormonal Therapy 5/13/2008 Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy Chemotherapy AC + T (Taxotere)
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Jun 20, 2008 06:59AM Deen wrote:

For all those whose hair is coming in .... what's it doing today?

I have a "halo" and it feels as soft as down.  Waiting, waiting, waiting for it to fill in. Grrrr.  Took some pictures and, as soon as I can work out how to post them, I will so you can have a laugh!

D.

Life's tough, get a helmet. Dx 1/2008, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/35 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 21, 2008 01:25PM cookie1956 wrote:

Hello, all....I am starting my T , C, and H treatment on Tuesday.  From reading everyones posts, I have two weeks until hair loss.  I do not want it coming out in globs, and I plan to shave my head prior to that happening.  My question is where to get a wig.  My area has two shops, and neither one handled my phone call well enough for me to even want to go there.  Has anyone purchased online?  I have looked at a few things on headcovers.com and they look pretty nice.  Anyone know firsthand? 

Dx 4/14/2008, IDC, 1cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 1/4 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Jun 21, 2008 05:58PM artsee wrote:

I got my wigs from TLC catalog. They are also on line.  tlcdirect.org

Everyone tells me they can't believe it's a wig. No sense in paying big money from a salon.

I was sitting out on the patio yesterday and I noticed some longer hairs on my arms that hadn't fallen out. I pulled on them and they pulled right out. Here we are 6 weeks past chemo and the stuff is still dropping. I have about 3 eyebrow hairs left. This is going to be a LONG process. Here I'm waiting for them to be replaced and they are still going south. Go figure.At least the head hair is staying put.

Have a mild s/e weekend to all,

Artsee

Dx 1/15/2008, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 1/15/2008, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 2/6/2008 Lumpectomy: Right Hormonal Therapy 5/13/2008 Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy Chemotherapy AC + T (Taxotere)
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Jun 22, 2008 12:44PM cookie1956 wrote:

Did anyone NOT lose their hair with T, C, and  H?

Dx 4/14/2008, IDC, 1cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 1/4 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Jun 22, 2008 03:18PM - edited Jun 22, 2008 03:19PM by Cathy-CA

MaryAnne -- I certainly didn't lose all of it.  I had "male pattern baldness" where I lost a lot on top, but the sides and back weren't too bad.  With a baseball cap or hat on, it looked normal, but thin.  When it started falling out, I had it cut very short and if I had it to do over again I would not have done that.  I've advised other women on that combo to wait and see how it goes before doing anything drastic.  I'm nine weeks out now from the last chemo, but still on Herceptin and have hair coming back everywhere.  I never lost my eyelashes or all of my eyebrows, either.

Dx 10/24/2007, IDC, 2cm, Stage IV, Grade 3, 0/3 nodes, mets, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Jun 22, 2008 06:07PM kimbly wrote:

I had Taxotere, Carboplatin and Herceptin and did not completely lose my hair.  I had that male pattern baldness thing going on too.  Now my hair is coming in quickly although not as quickly as i would like.  I wear my wig less and a cap more.  At least I have a normal hairline in front now whereas a few weeks ago I had a receding hairline.  My last  chemo was end of march ... took about 6 weeks for it to grow and now it won't stop. I am back to shaving the legs everyday. Hair on my arms (which used to be quite hairy) is coming back and my eyebrows are thick again ( never lost them completely but they thinned) same goes for the eyelashes. I had hardly any bottom lashes for about 3 weeks and now they are coming back and are fine.  I just learned to be a master with the eyeliner and no one really noticed. 

I too am always touching my head or looking in the mirror, back to front AND sides looking for new growh.  I just am so impatient!!!   

Dx 11/21/2007, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Jun 22, 2008 06:57PM - edited Jun 22, 2008 11:48PM by LorenaB

According to my 7-year-old son, my head is "furry."  There is a very fine, whitish-grayish-colorless fuzz of hair, and also some dark prickly hairs sticking up, although from a few feet away I still look pretty darn bald.  Cry  Eyebrows are coming in like crazy --the ones that never fell out need to be trimmed, spots are filling in, and there is a lot of growth in areas that I usually get waxed.  Eyebrows are still thin and some are coming in WHITE.  I am 6 1/2 weeks post-chemo (so I suppose the hair has been growing for around 3 weeks?).

Artsee, I never thought I'd be excited about shaving my legs either, but hair growth anywhere is a good thing at this point!

Dx 12/20/2007, IDC, 1cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 1/11 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 22, 2008 08:23PM - edited Jun 22, 2008 08:24PM by NancyD

I'm a little over four weeks post-neoadjuvant chemo. There's fine white fuzz on my head that you can only see in silhouette (gotta put something dark behind my head). Eyelashes are holding their own—thinned but not gone, but eyebrows are getting thinner still. I hope they've reached their max.

I had to go buy another wig because my first one is just too hot, and I can't pin up the long hair which drives me crazy in the heat or even tuck it behind my ears...it's just not styled for it. So I got a cute shorter one from the Paula Young catalogue. My daughter thinks it's not as stylish as my longer hair one, but my father likes it better. Who to believe, a 16 year old or an 89 year old?  Anyway, it's a lot cooler on my neck so it'll be my summer hair.

Artsee, I noticed my leg hair had returned, but it finer. Combined with the light color, it is just not very visible, so I may not shave until it comes in coarser. Funky, I know, but I've got a few more rounds of chemo to go through that'll take care of it again for a while.

And that's where I despair. After surgery, I will have two more chemo treatments, so any gain I make in the next five weeks will be lost. 

Life is good. It's not perfect. but it's good. Dx 2/22/2008, IDC, Left, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 4/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 3/21/2008 Adriamycin (doxorubicin), Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 7/10/2008 Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right Hormonal Therapy 8/31/2008 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 9/4/2008 Breast, Lymph nodes Surgery 1/27/2010 Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap; Reconstruction (right): DIEP flap
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Jun 22, 2008 09:30PM jdash wrote:

i went out like you suz- first time i was away for the weekend  i remember it was in dec 06  my last chemo was aug 06  my hair was maybe a itty bit longer than yours, i figured no one would know me so i left the wig home, a waitress complimented me on my haircut@!!! she had short hair too!  now i have pretty long hair again  and i dyed it back to blonde highlights  it also was a non color -color  a dull greyish brown   it does come back!

Lean on me when you are not strong- And I'll be your friend, I'll help you carry on- For it won't be long till I'm gonna need somebody to lean on... Bill Withers "Lean On Me". Dx 4/22/2006, IDC, Stage IIIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Jun 22, 2008 11:34PM Barbeqrn wrote:

Hi everybody and I am with all of you on wanting more hair! I am about 8 months out of Taxotere and Cytoxan...I had 6 treatments and did not have to do the wig thing until the end of session 5. I took alot of Vitamin E prior to the first chemo, as I had read it would help with hair loss. It must have done something to help. I never lost all the hair but had patches of bald...I looked like a nuclear war fallout victim! Now it is coming in much wavier than my previous straight hair! I still wear my wig to work only, as I still feel a little self concious. As far as eyelashes...I lost the bottoms completely and parts of the brows but they came in really quickly...

I was on a special web last night which has photos of women who have sent their pictures with various states of regrowth...you have to go on the members list for "Timtam"to be allowed entrance. It makes you feel better to see others who have gone through what we have and have hair again!!!!!

Take care,
Barb

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Jun 22, 2008 11:34PM Barbeqrn wrote:

Hi everybody and I am with all of you on wanting more hair! I am about 8 months out of Taxotere and Cytoxan...I had 6 treatments and did not have to do the wig thing until the end of session 5. I took alot of Vitamin E prior to the first chemo, as I had read it would help with hair loss. It must have done something to help. I never lost all the hair but had patches of bald...I looked like a nuclear war fallout victim! Now it is coming in much wavier than my previous straight hair! I still wear my wig to work only, as I still feel a little self concious. As far as eyelashes...I lost the bottoms completely and parts of the brows but they came in really quickly...

I was on a special web last night which has photos of women who have sent their pictures with various states of regrowth...you have to go on the members list for "Timtam"to be allowed entrance. It makes you feel better to see others who have gone through what we have and have hair again!!!!!

Take care,
Barb

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Jun 23, 2008 02:36AM Diana63 wrote:

I had 4 A/C treatments and 12 taxol, my white/clear fuzz started coming in while on taxol. I am three weeks past my last treatment and I can feel stubble but I still can't see much of anything. I'm not sure if the fuzz is really hair or not, it is baby fine, long and spread out all over my head. Surprised

I have a few eye brows, and very few eye lashes left. Hair on legs, under arms & other area's is coming back slowly. Embarassed

“Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). Dx 10/6/2007, IDC, 5cm, Stage IV, Grade 3, 4/9 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 23, 2008 02:48AM Deen wrote:

I'm going in for surgery tomorrow - BALD - and I'm just so self-conscious / embarassed for people to see me this way.  I'm paranoif of waking up in recovery with nothing on my head - or in a room with others seeing me with my ugly little hairs.  For some reason, I'm more aware of being bald now than when I was going through chemo.  Don't know why ....

Diana63 - I have the spread out balding male look too: it just makes me want to shave it off!!!! But, i think I might regret that

Life's tough, get a helmet. Dx 1/2008, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/35 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-

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