Chances are thin.

Meaning, for patients on endocrine therapy for breast cancer, chances are they may experience thinning hair. This ne’er before described phenomenon was coined as endocrine therapy-induced alopecia (EIA) by none other than observant dermatologists at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. They describe 112 women who developed “androgenetic alopecia” (a derm-ified phrase for male-pattern baldness) while on endocrine therapy, both aromatase inhibitors (67%) and tamoxifen (33%). The good news is that it was only grade 1 in 92% of cases, except that isn’t actually good considering CTCAE assigns only two grades to hair loss: <50% loss (aka grade 1) and >50% loss (grade 2). Oy. The actually good news is that most (37 of 46) women had subjective “moderate to significant” responses to topical minoxidil 5%. TBL: Endocrine therapy may produce the opposite of amazing pregnancy hair, which is sadly distressing to patients but fortunately easy to treat. | Freites-Martinez, JAMA Oncol 2018


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