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Paxman Scalp Cooling System Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers to your frequently asked questions about the Paxman Scalp Cooling System.

Q: What is scalp cooling?

Scalp cooling is a simple treatment that can prevent hair loss caused by certain chemotherapy drugs.

Q: Are there any side effects?
Visit Paxmanusa.com for detailed information on potential side effects.

Q: How does it work?

The cooling cap reduces the temperature of the scalp a few degrees immediately before, during, and after the administration of chemotherapy, reducing the blood flow to the hair follicles to prevent chemotherapy from damaging them.

Q: What is the success rate?

The treatment is successful in retaining hair in about 50 percent of patients. Many factors impact success of the cooling system, including age, hair type, stage of cancer, and general health.

Q: How long does it take?

Patients undergo scalp cooling each time they receive chemotherapy. The average cooling time is two and a half hours, including 30 minutes of pre-infusion cooling, cooling during infusion, and 90 minutes of post-infusion cooling.

Q: Is it painful?

A majority of Paxman scalp cooling patients were comfortable while wearing the device, with less than 5 percent of participants discontinuing the treatment because of intolerance. The most intense feeling of discomfort is felt in the first 10 to 15 minutes of treatment and subsides as patients become accustomed to the cold.

Q: How can patients minimize discomfort?

Deep breathing can help at the initial stages by increasing relaxation and improving stress management. Patients should dress warmly and in layers, even in warm weather. Hot drinks and blankets are another good way to alleviate the coldness some patients experience.

Q: How cold does it get?

The cooling system brings the scalp temperature to roughly 66 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius).

Q: Are there special prep instructions?

Following an initial scalp cooling consultation, the medical team will provide instructions to prepare for the first session. Most session prep is minimal.

Q: Is covered by insurance?

To our knowledge, no insurance providers cover this service. Patients will work directly with Paxman for registration, payment, and material fulfillment. They also can answer questions about insurance coverage and payment.

Q: How long has it been on the market?

The Paxman Scalp Cooling System was introduced in 1997 and was FDA cleared in 2017.

Q: Who is eligible to use it?

Patients being treated for solid tumors are eligible to use the cooling system. Patients with cold sensitivity, cold agglutinin disease, cryoglobulinemia, cryofibrinogenemia, and post-traumatic cold dystrophy should not use scalp cooling.

Q: What if I’m interested, but my physician is at a location that’s not offering the scalp cooling system?

For interested patients who are not seen at one of the 21 participating sites, please contact your physician to discuss options. Patients may be eligible to receive chemotherapy at a participating location.

Q: How do patients enroll?

To receive the service, the patient’s physician writes a prescription that is filled by Paxman. All registration, payment, and materials are handled through Paxman Scalp Cooling System. After the order is placed, a kit is shipped from Paxman directly to the patient’s home. Patients bring the kit to each chemotherapy session.

The kit includes:

  • The Paxman Scalp Cooling Cap
  • The neoprene cooling cap cover
  • A head band for protection of the ears and forehead
  • Spray bottle to moisturize hair prior to putting on cap
  • A wide-toothed comb
  • Conditioner
  • Patient brochure with instructions and specific hair care-related information
  • Towel to dry the hair and to dry the cap after the session
  • A personalized coin that will be inserted into the machine at the beginning of each session

Q: Who can be contacted to answer additional questions?