OK to color, perm new hair?

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Question from Maryanne: I've always colored my hair. Now that I've finally GOT hair again, is that ok to do? What about a perm?
Answers - Mary Gail Mercurio Once the new hair is coming in, there is no structural abnormality so there is no problem with cosmetic intervention, such as dying and perming. The hair is only weak at the time of the chemotherapy because of the effect on the hair shaft, because the hair shaft becomes weakened during its creation and it breaks off at the scalp but once the chemotherapy stops, there is a healthy hair shaft.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. Many of my patients dyed their hair for years and forgot what their natural color was. When their new hair grows back in gray or "mousy brown," it seems like a whole new color, when in fact, it could have been their natural hair color that they were dying for all of those years. I suggest to my patients to have a little bit of fun and try some "temporary dyes" first. These dyes are also called "semi-permanent." They wash out after multiple shampoos. You can try various colors to see if you want to go for a whole new look.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called No Hair, New Hair, Skin Care featured Mary Gail Mercurio, M.D., Ronda Gates, M.S., R.Ph., and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions on the physical side effects of breast cancer treatment, and what you can do about them.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in August 2001.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.

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