How long does it take for my baby hair to fall out because of chemo?

Dave b asked...

How long does it take for my baby hair to fall out because of chemo?

Expert Answer

Linda Ackerman, R.N. has clinical experience in oncology, women's health, and medical nursing. She has been practicing for more than 20 years and is a licensed registered nurse in both Florida and Wisconsin. In addition, she serves as a board member of Breast Cancer Recovery and the Wisconsin Cancer Council.


I think you are referencing your new hair growth as baby hair. The new hair growth typically begins once your chemotherapy is completed. The new hair growth is typically different than your hair that was lost.

Your hair may grow back as white, gray or a different color, eventually, the pigment cells return to normal and your original hair color should return. You are not necessarily going to lose this new hair; however, it will most likely change over time. It is difficult to predict when this will occur, but often it occurs the first year following the last chemotherapy treatment.

In addition, I will add some helpful tips for new hair growth.

"¢ Shampoo hair twice weekly with a mild shampoo such as those intended for dry or damaged hair.

"¢ The scalp should also be thoroughly massaged to remove any scale.

"¢ Follow shampoo with a conditioner for fine or limp hair.

"¢ Avoid high heat from blow dryers to the hair and skin.

"¢ Keep hairstyling to a minimum due to the new hair being prone to breakage Brushing, combing, hair pins and curling should all be minimized. Curling appliances should be avoided as the scalp is very tender following chemotherapy.

"¢ Hair styling aids such as mousse, hair spray, hair spritz, styling gel and sculpturing gel may be used in moderation. It is best to select products with normal to light holding ability as the high hold products may not be completely removed with mild shampoos. Hair styling aids can build up on the hair shaft resulting in dullness and possibly scalp disease.

I hope you find this information helpful.