2019 Step Up. Stop Cancer.

Locks For Gold

We've Got More Than 370 Reasons To Step Up. Stop Cancer. That’s how many patients get a new diagnosis of cancer each year at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. 

We acknowledge that hair loss is a common side effect in patients undergoing chemotherapy management. The hair loss typically starts 2-3 weeks after the treatment has initiated and can take 4-6 months after treatment completion for hair to grow back. In a small number of patients, hair may never regrow. Approximately one-half of all patients with hair loss due to chemotherapy administration feel that this is one of the most traumatizing experiences of their therapy. In addition to this, there are significant psychosocial side effects related to the hair loss including the increased risks of secondary isolation or bullying.

Unfortunately, hair alternatives are not readily available to all patients undergoing chemotherapy due to lack of donations of real hair to make more believable wigs and due to cost of making and maintaining wigs. A customized human hair replacement system can cost up to $5,000. Wigs or partial wigs made from real human hair significantly impact the quality of life that our patients have for the better. This is why Phoenix Children’s Hospital started the Locks for Gold Event in 2017. To date we have donated over 1,200 inches of hair to two organizations which provide free hair replacement systems to children with medical reasons for hair loss.

In addition, research funding is limited in pediatric cancer. Annually only 4% of federal government cancer research funding goes towards studying pediatric cancer. Although, overall survival in pediatric cancer is better than adult outcomes, 12% of patients diagnosed with pediatric cancer will not survive past 5-years. It is the most difficult to get funding towards the performance of pilot studies, which is the first type of study that needs to be implemented in order to progress towards a source of cure. Through the Locks for Gold event, we are hoping to raise money each year to help support internal grants towards pilot studies, so that “The Mane Reason is Cure”. 

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