The newly-enhanced cooling cap
A cooling cap that can help reduce hair loss in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy has been further improved by a UK rubber and silicones manufacturer.
Herefordshire-based Primasil Silicones, along with its academic partner, the University of Huddersfield, developed a new formulation for use in the ‘Paxman Cooling Cap’, designed to improve the effectiveness and availability of the product, which was first developed in the 1990s, with help from Primasil.
The main challenge this time was to create a new silicone rubber formulation that would give the reusable cap greater flexibility to adapt to varying head shapes and sizes around the world. In addition, the partners looked at ways of increasing automation in the cap’s production to satisfy increasing demand for the product.
Chemotherapy affects rapidly dividing cells, which include most of our hair follicles. Its unintended consequence can be atrophy of the hair root bulb. The Paxman cooling cap essentially consists of a compact refrigeration system connected to a lightweight silicone rubber cap. By lowering the head and scalp temperature, immediately before, after and during treatment, it reduces blood flow to the follicles and so prevents or minimises damage.
“Primasil silicone’s rubber experience in the medical industry and its understanding of, quality standards and certifications has made them an invaluable partner in both developing and improving the cooling cap,” Richard Paxman, Managing Director, Paxman Coolers explains.
Primasil Managing Director, Steve Wheeler, added: “Our latest joint efforts have produced a better fitting cap, which ensures that the coolant running through it is always in close contact with the scalp, all over the head and throughout the treatment. We also now have a more automated manufacturing process that allows increased efficiency and higher volume supply in response to market needs and opportunities.
“Silicone rubber is a remarkable material which is flexible in every sense of the word. Through subtle alterations of its chemistry we can bend and shape its properties to meet most needs, and when the right minds are brought together our potential for creating, improving and transforming medical devices is almost limitless,” he concluded