Stotfold woman recounts cold cap chemotherapy treatment ahead of charity MoonWalk

PUBLISHED: 14:01 02 March 2019

Keeley will take part in the Walk the Walk MoonWalk to raise money and awareness for the campaign. Picture: Courtesy of Keeley Russell

Keeley will take part in the Walk the Walk MoonWalk to raise money and awareness for the campaign. Picture: Courtesy of Keeley Russell

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A Stotfold woman has spoken out about her experience using a cold cap when undergoing chemotherapy last year, after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

Keeley Russell used a cold cap during her chemotherapy last year. Picture: Keeley RussellKeeley Russell used a cold cap during her chemotherapy last year. Picture: Keeley Russell

A Stotfold woman has spoken out about her experience using a cold cap when undergoing chemotherapy last year, after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

Keeley Russell was able to use the cap, which are used to prevent hair loss of people undergoing certain types of chemotherapy treatment, after breast cancer charity Walk the Walk provided a grant to the North East Herts NHS Trust.

She said: “I used the cold cap while having my chemotherapy. The pain as your scalp is frozen is frozen for the first 15 minutes was excruciating, but I kept all of my hair – in actual fact it got thicker and darker! I would recommend this to anyone going through chemo.”

As hair loss is not considered life-threatening, NHS funding for cold caps is not a priority.

Over the last 12 years, grants have been made by Walk the Walk for 625 machines in 247 hospitals across the country, including to Stevenage’s Lister Hospital.

The charity is committed to removing the postcode lottery and offering more and more people the choice of using the machines.

Nina Barough, founder and chief executive of Walk the Walk, said: “Losing your hair while having chemotherapy is often the final straw for many cancer patients and can be completely debilitating.

“Over the past 12 years, Walk the Walk has worked incredibly hard towards removing the postcode lottery that has meant – in some areas – cancer patients were unable to receive the choice of this treatment.
“I’m delighted that Keeley Russell was able to use of one of the pink Walk the Walk cold caps at Lister Hospital.”

The cold caps provided by Walk the Walk are funded by supporters of the cause taking part in the charity’s Walk the Walk events to raise money.

On Saturday, May 11, Keeley will take on the MoonWalk London to raise money and awareness for Walk the Walk.

She will also walk the streets of London at midnight with 10 friends.

Keeley added: “Like many other people diagnosed with cancer, I decided I wanted to give back. I have had amazing service throughout my treatment which included surgery, chemo and radiotherapy.

“I now have hormone therapy and Herceptin to boot. I have a team of 10 girls that have been amazing and are doing the MoonWalk London with me.”

For more on the MoonWalk go to www.walkthewalk.org.

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