Learning Center Articles

Integumentary System : Cancer

Integumentary System
AlopeciaDestruction of hair follicles by chemotherapy or radiation to scalp.

Hair loss usually is temporary with chemotherapy, but usually permanent in response to radiation.

Suggest ways to cope with hair loss (e.g., hair pieces, scarves, wigs).

Cut long hair before therapy.

Avoid excessive shampooing, brushing, and combing of hair.

Avoid use of electric hair dryers, curlers, and curling rods.

Discuss impact of hair loss on self-image.

Radiation skin changes (dry to moist desquamation)Radiation damages skin
Chemotherapy-Induced Skin ChangesHyperpigmentation.

Telangiectasia.

Photosensitivity.

Acneiform eruptions.

Acral erythema.

Alert patient to potential skin changes.

Encourage patient to avoid sun exposure.

Implement symptomatic management as needed depending on specific skin effect (e.g., application of lotions, benzoyl peroxide for acne, corticosteroid creams