George Bush Goes Bald to Honour Leukaemia Child

george bush senior shaves head for cancer patient patrick

After learning that the two year old son of a member of his security team was battling leukaemia, former president George Bush Snr decided to shave his head as part of a charity effort to raise money for Patrick's cancer treatment.

Members of the former leader's secret service detail have also been going bald for the good cause, after a staff member got the ball roiling by agreeing to shave his head in support of Patrick if someone would donate $500 to Patrick's Pals. Whilst Patrick's prognosis is "very positive" according to the website, it is expected that their will be years of treatment ahead.

Bald for a Great Cause

President Bush and his wife Laura lost their infant daughter Robin to leukaemia a number of decades ago in 1953, which may have influenced Bush's decision to join the fundraising effort. The fundraising team's website states that they will also be taking part in a motorcycle benefit run. You can donate online by following this link.

Needless to say, Bush's gesture went down well online, with current President Barack Obama' s office tweeting a picture of Bush and Patrick, urging supporters to show their support. Bill Clinton also chimed in, saying that he loved what Bush was doing and that he "looked great".

Sadly, hair loss from cancer treatment cannot be treated medically, although hair should regrow in the months following the treatment course. The reason behind hair loss from chemotherapy is that the drugs used to attack the cancer cells often kill certain healthy cells along the way, such as hair cells. By preventing the hair cells from dividing, cancer drugs progressively lead to hair thinning and as the shaft breaks away from the scalp, severe hair loss.

Hair Loss from Cancer

For radiotherapy, high-energy radiation rays can damage the hair follicles when they are directed onto the scalp and cause the hair to fall out. Depending on the amount of radiation therapy received, hair loss can in some circumstances be permanent.

Natural hair growth will resume within a year for 75% of patients whose cancer treatments lead to hair loss. There is also, for certain patients who are receiving chemotherapy, the option to use a relatively new piece of technology called the cooling cap which can help to prevent hair loss. The caps work by reducing the blood supply carrying the chemotherapy chemicals to the scalp, meaning less hair cells are damaged.

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The Belgravia Centre

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