November 1st – Rogaine Report

Disclaimer:  Against all advice to the contrary, I have decided to publish a monthly report detailing my experience using Rogaine.  I wish to apologize in advance to any family members who are embarrassed by my openness.  What the hell …. this is science and I might be able to help others by sharing my experience.

Today I bought my first box of Rogaine at the drugstore.   Rogaine is a hair regrowth treatment.  It contains 2%Minoxidil which is a topical solution medically proven to help regrow hair in men with male pattern baldness.   


 I use to have great hair.  It was medium length, straight and smart-looking.  It defined who I was – a fashionable career woman.  My hair was fine in texture  but thick – meaning I had lots of it.  I looked after it and fussed over it but rarely did I complain.  I was one of the lucky ones.  

Over the summer of 2011, I went through six sessions of chemotherapy.  High up there on the list of things I hate about cancer is alopecia or hair loss. Not everyone who undergoes chemotherapy loses their hair but it is a side effect from the chemo drugs (FEC+D).

It is now fourteen months since my last chemo and my hair has failed to grow back to its original state.  It is thin and batchy.  You can easily see my scalp shining through the thin stubble. It is reminiscent of a 90 year old’s head:  thin, flat and very sparse.  As a woman I find my appearance embarrassing.  Everyday I must just suck it up and head out into the world.  I feel that people stare at me and make wrong assumptions based on my appearance.   I want to put my whole experience with cancer behind me  but this lack of hair thing is a daily, no, it is a constant  reminder. Lack of hair strips me of my self confidence.  I want to feel good about myself again.   In spite of the carefully applied makeup and dangling ear rings, my thin hair pulls me down. 

Yesterday at a follow-up medical oncologist appointment  Rogaine was recommended. I like the idea that someone medically trustworthy and who is familiar with all my current prescriptions is suggesting this product.  It is obviously safe. Before yesterday I had never heard of it.  It’s not cheap at $71.18 a box  (tax included).  Inside is a bottle of the clear liquid and an applicator. 

The instructions say to apply 1 ml of Rogaine directly onto the scalp in the hair loss area TWO TIMES A DAY for one year. Each bottle should last about 25 – 30 days.  They also say that it might take up to 12 months of use to see best results.  $71.18 x 12 months is a little over $850.00.  Wow.  That’s quite an investment and committment. 

I’m thinking that there are lots of people out there who would like to try this produce but are reluctant to take the plunge.  That is why I am going to report back on my experience with Rogaine.   It will be similar to my Corn Field reports – a short monthly check-in to let you know if anything is happening (or growing).  On a quarterly basis I might also give a summary with my findings and any recommendation or obvious conclusions.   How does that sound?   

 For some reason Rogaine is not recommended for women. Maybe the manufacturers of Rogaine are worried about liabilities from increased facial hair should a woman not use their product correctly.  The instructions state to be careful and not get any liquid on your face.  Next month this might be me.

 This is my hair now, November 1, 2012…  14 months after chemo.  This picture is of the top of my head from the front.

Wish me luck as I start out on this new endeavour.   I will boldly share my experience with you.  

Giddy with anticipation….. Diane

About westlakemusings

In 2013 my husband and I retired. We bought an old pre-confederation house out in the country. This blog is about our new world in the country as we explore all of life's possibilities.
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14 Responses to November 1st – Rogaine Report

  1. Good luck! It’s kind and brave of you to share your experience. I hope that it goes well for you.

    I will not, however, be sharing my experience removing a hormonal moustache with Nair. I mean, there are some limits.

  2. Donna says:

    I wish you all the luck with your new found endeavour. If it what makes the heart SMILE, it is well worth the price. Walk proud, we are right beside you all the way.

  3. I hope it works out for you – I really didn’t know that hair grows in differently after chemo. I certainly understand wanting things to return to normal, especially your appearance. I’d want to feel my old comfort level with my hair too, I think.

  4. luxbeauty says:

    Try Minoxidil (the generic Rogaine). Much less expensive. You can buy online for cheap cheap or check out your Walmart/ target etc. you might find your scalp reacts to the liquid Rogaine. That is a reaction to the liquid, not to the drug. You might prefer the foam. No scalp reaction and disappears better in to the hair. (doesn’t look greasy). There is also a laser comb which I am investigating and considering bringing in to the shop. Google laser comb. Also several shampoos and styling products that help thicken hair Like those from Bumble and Phyto Good luck. I’ve done tonnes of research. And experienced it post pregnancy.


    Sent from my iPhone; pardon my brevity and typos

  5. Rev. Marilyn says:

    You continue to inspire me with your bravery and courage. I can only imagine how you must feel, as I can testify to how truly awesome your hair used to be. Having said that, the hair does not make the woman. You should never be ashamed. You are a survivor, have been through hell and come out the other side, sense of humour intact. You are truly one of the most beautiful women I know, inside and out. I’m with Donna. I’m here with you and for you and love you more each day.

I would love to hear your thoughts. I really, really love comments.

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