Therapy's more than skin deep

CANCER patient Cindy Miller says she could handle seeing her hair fall out.

She could even handle the dryness and changes to her skin tone caused by chemotherapy treatment.

What she found most confronting was the loss of her eyebrows and eyelashes.

Mrs Miller, of Wattle Grove, will finish treatment for breast cancer in April.

She is one of the many women dealing with the side effects of chemotherapy.

"When my hair started to fall out I got my daughter to shave it off but what I found confronting was my eyelashes and eyebrows, I felt so naked without those," she said.

"When I went out I felt that people would notice me without hair and eyebrows and people would be confronted to see somebody like that."

Mrs Miller recently attended Liverpool Cancer Therapy Centre's Look Good . . . Feel Better program. The national community program, which is run by the Cancer Patient's Foundation, holds separate workshops for men, women and teenagers undergoing cancer treatment.

The free 2½-hour workshops help patients manage the appearance-related side effects caused by treatment.

Participants are taught how to apply make-up and draw on eyebrows, they are given skin routines and are shown how to wear wigs and scarfs.

Liverpool volunteer and Look Good . . . Feel Better program facilitator Lyn Georgeson said the program empowered women and made them feel confident.

"We get a lot of ladies who have shaky hands so we make it more of a pampering session for them and do their skin care and make-up. One of the real benefits of the workshops for women is being with other women who are on the same path," she said.

Details: 1800 650 960 or visit www.lgfb.org.au.

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