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Patients with Persistent Post-Chemotherapy Alopecia

JAMA Dermatol; ePub 2019 Mar 6; Freites-Martinez, et al

Persistent chemotherapy-induced alopecia (pCIA) is frequently more severe and diffuse when compared with endocrine therapy-induced alopecia after chemotherapy (EIAC), and both groups of patients experienced a negative effect, a recent study found. A modest benefit was observed, however, with dermatologic therapy. A retrospective multicenter cohort of 192 women with cancer treated with cytotoxic agents who received a clinical diagnosis of persistent alopecia (98 with pCIA and 94 with EIAC) between January 1, 2009, and July 31, 2017, was analyzed. Researchers found:

  • A total of 98 women with pCIA (median age, 56.5 years [range, 18-83 years]) and 94 women with EIAC (median age, 56 years [range, 29-84 years]) were included.
  • The most common agents associated with pCIA were taxanes for 80 patients (82%); the most common agents associated with EIAC were aromatase inhibitors for 58 patients (62%).
  • Diffuse alopecia was predominant in patients with pCIA compared with patients with EIAC (31 of 75 [41%] vs 23 of 92 [25%]), with greater severity among patients with pCIA (29 of 75 [39%] vs 12 of 92 [13%]).
  • A negative emotional effect was reported by both groups.


Freites-Martinez A, Chan D, Sibaud V, et al. Assessment of quality of life and treatment outcomes of patients with persistent postchemotherapy alopecia. [Published online ahead of print March 6, 2019]. JAMA Dermatol. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2018.5071.