Array change timeMy wife, Beth-Ann, and I researched what worked well for other Optune users regarding how to avoid and treat skin irritation—then we cleared everything with my doctor prior to use. Here are the steps we have worked out for array changes:
- Beth-Ann gives me a close shave, going in multiple directions, with the Pitbull electric shaver provided by nCompass,™ Novocure’s support program.
- After shaving, I immediately shower & wash my head with a gentle unscented product to ensure all of the hair trimmings are washed away.
- It’s recommended that people run a gauze pad moistened with 70 percent isopropyl across their scalp.
- We talked to my doctor about recommendations from other Optune users and my doctor approved my use of additional things to help my scalp. My doctor, Beth-Ann, and I found a few products that are the best options for me but remember this is just my experience. Talk with your doctor about what might be right for you.
- Beth-Ann cuts triangles in-between the array disks. Slits are cut around the array edges. These allow the arrays to conform to my scalp. She makes sure to shift the arrays away from the last place they were on my skin.
- Triangles cut from the arrays are placed under the connection point where the cord meets the arrays. For me, this reduces friction irritation.
- We position the cords so they may be pulled above my head while I sleep. I found that it irritated my skin to sleep on the cords.
- We use the recommended medical tape to connect my arrays. This stronger tape does not contact my scalp. This tape is also used to wrap around the cords every 6” or so, to keep the cord placement consistent.
In between array changes
We worked to find solutions to irritation that my doctor approved. That has made a huge difference in my scalp health.
- My doctor prescribed a corticosteroid treatment that we apply to areas of irritation. We also apply it twice to my entire scalp during breaks per my doctor’s recommendation. Typically, I take a six-hour break every three to four days.
- Giving my scalp time to breathe also helps. During breaks I try not to wear hats.
- My wife keeps a close eye on any small white scalp pimples, to keep them becoming larger sores.
Keeping it cool!
- We take care to keep the arrays in tight contact with my scalp. Loose arrays may cause scalp irritation.
- Throughout the week, we use array trim pieces to secure any loose edges.
- If the arrays start to lift up, we use tape to keep them down. I put it on over the arrays and up the cord. My cords are gathered like a ponytail.
- At night, a fan and cooling pillow keeps my scalp comfortable.
- We rearranged our deck to ensure I have shade at all times of the day.
- To protect my scalp from overheating in the sun I typically wear a fishing “gaiter,” which is a long tube of breathable stretchy athletic fabric.
Scalp health is multifaceted & unique for each Optune user. But I hope some of these tips aid in keeping your scalp healthy! Of course, you should consult with your doctor about how best to manage scalp irritation issues. Be well & take care.