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Breast Cancer Haven
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Nearly a year post chemo

Has anyone suffered itching following chemo?! I have been doing really well and then about 6 weeks or so ago my scalp and the back of my neck started to itch. The hospital thinks it may be to do with my hair growing back. Whatever is causing it, nothing seems to be helping much. It really does drive me nuts sometimes and trying to concentrate at work is a nightmare. To date the only thing that has helped - a bit - is 20mg Amitryptiline at night and Chlorphenamine antihistamines by day but even then it hasn't stopped it completely. As I am typing this I'm itching again! I had 6 cycles of Docataxel, Carboplatin and Herceptin and with added Pertuzumab at cycle 2. I then had bilateral mastectomy and lymph node clearance left axilla. That is all fine. All healed up and no problem. I am continuing on the Herceptin and Pertuzumab every 3 weeks. I never itched at all during chemo! If anyone has any ideas I would be really grateful!

7 Replies

I cannot really help with any suggestions but hope the itching goes away soon. Presumably you have spoken to your breast care nurse about it. I have just had 2 rounds of chemo and to begin with I had itching on my hands arms and feet but that gas gone away now. Good luck x


Hi, I feel your pain (and itchiness!) but unfortunately I was itchy before chemo as well as after. (finished Jan 16) I have to say it has made more prone to bouts of itchiness, especially in bed but I think my skin has become very sensitive to products. Are you using a new shampoo or conditioner? Or maybe different laundry products? Unfortunately any dressings and plasters cause me to itch and blister now so hate having surgery or cuts etc. The other suggestion is maybe it's stress related? I'd say worth seeing your GP for as could be an unfortunate gift your treatment has given you!

Sorry not really ideas, but hopefully you can get sorted soon,


Nix x


Had same drugs as you completely I think I am lucky didn't lose my hair but sensitive scalp last summer finished chemo august x my scalp seems fine now how bout sentinox cradle cap shampoo very gentle also aloe Vera shampoo x


It's a horrible feeling and I feel your pain!!! I'm itchy all the time and I'm 3 years post chemo. It could be related to a chemically induced menopause if you're in that age bracket? Mine certainly is so I only use perfume free hair products, shower gels and moisturisers. I drink lots of water, take omega oils and a piriton at nighttime. Hope this helps a bit.....


I am almost a year post chemo. My head was driving me crazy. It still itches but not as bad. I started using oatmeal soap instead of shampoo and I think it has helped a lot. The soap is summer hill botanicals by European treasures. He does sell shampoo but I find the oatmeal soap helps me better. I use a lot of his products and they are all natural. If you're interested and can't find him online let me know.

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I know exactly how you feel, I finished chemo Dec 2015 & herceptin Dec 2016 & i've suffered with itching for most of that time. I have tried loads of different creams but the only one that has helped is Aveeno. I hope this helps xx


Thank you so much everyone for your comments, suggestions and advice. I am trying a shampoo recommended by a friend and I have also ordered a scalp toner. I hope that together they will help. They are by Philip Kingsley and it's called Itchy/Flaky Scalp shampoo and toner. I fear the itch is something I have just got to put up with, at least until such time as my hair grows back properly. It is only the areas of my scalp where my hair is still thin that it really itches - oh, and the back of my neck for some strange reason! The chemo drugs really are nasty so I suppose it is inevitable that we end up with some side-effects. My itch is driving me nuts tonight! It wasn't too bad yesterday and earlier today. Off for a shower and hair wash in a mo! I suppose it is a small price to pay for my life!! Best wishes everyone. xx


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