How long does it take for hair to return after chemo?

Jreel1986 asked...

How long does it take for hair to return after chemo?

Expert Answer

Senior Editor Melanie Haiken, who is responsible for's coverage of cancer, general health, and family finance, discovered how important it is to provide accurate, targeted, usable health information to people facing difficult decisions.

The reason doctors are sometimes vague about when cancer patients can expect hair to regrow is that it depends how long you're going to have chemotherapy and the spacing of the cycles. Think of it this way: each chemotherapy treatment, or cycle, kills the fast-growing cells in the hair follicles. So your hair is actually starting to regrow again after each chemo treatment, but you can't see it because the next treatment causes it to fall out again.

Once you've had your last chemo treatment, you should start seeing regrowth within four to six weeks. But it will be slow; you can expect about a quarter inch of new growth each month. You may notice that your hair is a different color or texture when it regrows; most peoples' hair comes back in cury, at least at first. Keep in mind that curly hair seems to grow more slowly than straight hair simply because the hairs kink up, making them appear shorter. More answers to questions about hair loss are available here.