Modelling of temperature and perfusion during scalp cooling

F.E.M. Janssen, G.M.J. Leeuwen, van, A.A. Steenhoven, van

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Hair loss is a feared side effect of chemotherapy treatment. It may be prevented by cooling the scalp during administration of cytostatics. The supposed mechanism is that by cooling the scalp, both temperature and perfusion are diminished, affecting drug supply and drug uptake in the hair follicle. However, the effect of scalp cooling varies strongly. To gain more insight into the effect of cooling, a computer model has been developed that describes heat transfer in the human head during scalp cooling. Of main interest in this study are the mutual influences of scalp temperature and perfusion during cooling. Results of the standard head model show that the temperature of the scalp skin is reduced from 34.4 °C to 18.3 °C, reducing tissue blood flow to 25%. Based upon variations in both thermal properties and head anatomies found in the literature, a parameter study was performed. The results of this parameter study show that the most important parameters affecting both temperature and perfusion are the perfusion coefficient Q10 and the thermal resistances of both the fat and the hair layer. The variations in the parameter study led to skin temperature ranging from 10.1 °C to 21.8 °C, which in turn reduced relative perfusion to 13% and 33%, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4065-4073
JournalPhysics in Medicine and Biology
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2005


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