Together we will beat cancer


Life after cancer

7 Dec 2017 22:18

Hi, I’m richard I’ve recently had the all clear from my second bout of cancer. Having just turned 29, being fairly young I’m finding the after effects of my cancer difficult to deal with. The biggest effect emotionally is hairloss, it’s completely destroyed my confidence. I never leave the house without a hat on and I find myself avoiding most social events. My hair grew back the first time around, having shaved it off sometime after it never grew back and after my second spell of cancer I’m completely bald. It has been this way for quite sometime and shown no signs of regrowth. I understand this is a very small matter to deal with given the new lease of life I have been given, however it does have serious effects on my emotionally and physically. I’m starting to question wether a hair transplant would do me any good.... 

Re: Life after cancer

8 Dec 2017 08:11 in response to Richedw10

Hi Richard, Have the doctors given an opinion as to whether the hair will regrow? Some chemo side-effects are not permanent, but take a very long time to clear. And it is not a small matter if it is affecting your confidence so much. I don't know much about hair transplants. But I know that baldness is embraced by some men. Other men are really bothered by it. And although this is just my opinion, I am 100% sure that men who are bald, and are completely comfortable with it, are just as attractive to women, and other people in general, as men with a full head of hair. I have a feeling that it is the man's lack of confidence, and only that, which risks putting people off.

Re: Life after cancer

8 Dec 2017 08:39 in response to Harry2

Hi Richedward.  Great that you have the all clear!  Yeah!  Just one woman's point of view but baldness is neither here nor there as far as I am concerned.  However if it is bothering you (or whether you are making it a focus for all the stresses you have gone through) then it needs to be dealt with.  Like harry2 I know nothing of hair transplants but I would suggest you look up businesses that do hair transplants in your area on the internet.  I do think harry2 is right to a large extent when he says that baldness does not put people off but maybe a lack of confidence does.

You don't mention whether you are in a relationship or if you are keeping up your friendships. If you are shunning friends because you don't want to go out then I would think you should get a wig, have a hair transplant or whatever suits you best.  You may well find that after a while the whole issue turns out not to have been so important anyway.

I realise I am chattering away to no great purpose but I think you are bound to feel life is a bit difficult after having gone through your medical experiences but hey Richard you have got it through it.  Embrace life (and yourself) and don't let problems fester.  Enjoy  yourself and if it takes a bit of hair doctoring to give you the confidence to start moving forward then do it.

Re: Life after cancer

8 Dec 2017 21:09 in response to Harry2
Hi, thanks for the reply. I’ve never really asked my consultant, which sounds silly. The first time I overcame cancer my hair grew back normal. One day I decided to shave it and for some reason has never came back. The second spell of cancer I had I underwent a lot stronger chemotherapy so I presume the effects will be even worse this time around. I will bring it up next time I visit hospital for sure. The hair grows on the sides and back of my head just not the crown, which is very frustrating. My hair was a big part of me and always had been. I feel like life has treated me unfairly although I shouldn’t feel this way as I’m still here having beaten the disease twice already and some people are far less unfortunate Many thanks Richard

Re: Life after cancer

8 Dec 2017 21:15 in response to Annieliz

Appreciate the reply thankyou. It does bother me massively, to the point I have turned down social events with my fiends. It’s my works Christmas do coming up and I don’t even want to go there as daft as it sounds. Never really grasped the idea of a wig, always thought that was more for women then men. For me, life is all about confidence, self esteem and I have none of this at the moment. I feel like I’m being very selfish going on, I think my next step will be to speak to my consultant and take it from there....


thanks, richard 

Re: Life after cancer

15 Dec 2017 01:17 in response to Richedw10
Hello, like you I'm about to turn 29. I'm still waiting for my hair to come back. I am impatient though and I know it probably won't come back for another couple months at least. Meant to be my works do on Saturday and I'm not sure I have the confidence to go in a hat. I had really long hair before chemo, then felt brave one day & shaved it. Now it's taking forever to come back! I have a wig but it's not comfy like hats. I'm just very paranoid someone will do that grab ur hat off you thing and it'll be a big scene if everyone seeing me bald. Wish there was some magic shampoo or something!

Re: Life after cancer

15 Dec 2017 19:08 in response to chloea

Funny you should say that, my works do is on the 22nd and I’m really in two minds about going. I always wear a hat in work, never take it off through lack of confidence. The party is in a bar aswell so I can’t exactly wear my hat and I don’t just want to go’s horrible. 


I had had the same problem my hair grew back after about 3 months to about two inches. It was fairly thin so I thought if I shaved it that might make it come back some what thicker. Unfortunately my hair never grew back atall, which was very odd and frustrating. Since then I’ve gone through even stronger chemo so I hold no hope in it growing back whatsoever. Being 29 aswell I find it so draining, for my own self esteem. Im seriously considering a hair transplant. I just know it’s very expensive and there’s no guarantee it will work with my already damaged hair. Not to say of the cancer comer back I’ll lose it all over again.... 

Decisions decisions ! 



Re: Life after cancer

15 Dec 2017 19:32 in response to Richedw10

Gentlemen, gentlemen.  I know it is not for me to say "don't be silly" so I won't say that.  I just worry that you are cutting yourself off from social events; your colleagues - unless they are all horrible, won't care too much about your hair and will more likely be sorry to hear your news and help contribute to your social life.  Don't shut yourselves away.  Put yourself in the place of one of your colleagues if they were in your situation - you would want to do anything you could to help them.

I don't mean to minimise the enormity of your situation but taking the long-term view I just don't feel it would be wise to shut yourselves away.  Most people are nice.

Big hugs.

Re: Life after cancer

27 Dec 2017 01:13 in response to Richedw10

Hi Richard! First of all, major congrats on your all-clear, that's awesome.

Here are my thoughts on it. You aren't selfish at all for feeling the way you do, but I do think that you see it in a way that noone else around you does, probably because it's affecting you directly. I think there's a gap in the realization of how you want to be perceived vs. how you think hair would help in that, if you understand what I'm saying? I've never liked the term "rocking your baldness" because I don't think it's a disadvantage to rock, it's just something that deviates from your norm. I am NOT saying that it's not something deserving of being sad over if that's how you feel - but it's super important to analyze these feelings and go through them and figure out what exactly you're feeling that you're losing with your hair, because from a completely honest, completely objective standpoint - it makes no difference to the people around you. A bald man isn't a disadvantage romantically or socially - look at Jason Statham. Look at Dwayne Johnson. Many men strive to be like them, and it's not because they're bald or because they have hair, it's because of the exuberant amount of confidence they radiate. The fact that they're bald is just an after-after-after-thought, the same way them having curly hair, or super-thick hair would be.

You said that hair was a big part of you and always had been - maybe that's a good place to start. Physical attributes fade, change or disappear with time, cancer or not, and making them a big part of who you are can be a very dangerous thing, for anyone. 

Having said that, even if it's something everyone else won't bat an eyelash at, in the end what matters is whether or not you do. If it's something you can't get over or if you feel like a hair-transplant would be the best option for you then by all means do it!