By Willette Francis
Each year millions of people are affected by cancer. Last year, The American Cancer Society estimated that over 1.4 million people would be diagnosed and of these cases almost half were women. Once diagnosed, many will undergo cancer treatments to cure the disease and will endure chemotherapy, radiation and/or surgery.
While chemotherapy and radiation eradicates rapidly dividing cancer cells, it also destroys healthy cells, which causes physical changes to the body including the skin. "Changes in the skin may include partial or total hair loss, thin shiny skin, flakey, irritated, itchy, red or hypersensitive skin" says Dr. Charlene DeHaven, Clinical Director, Innovative Skincare. The changing physical appearance caused by treatment begins to affect patients emotionally. Dr Haven describes the feelings that cancer treatment patients experience as, "perceived loss of beauty" and "additionally, any pronounced change in the body (either in energy, emotional state and certainly appearance which can be seen by the world) results in feelings of loss or grief."
To address these changes, alleviate skin concerns and help regain a sense of beauty and self-confidence, skin care brands, Lindi Skin and iS Clinical, a line of Innovative Skincare have been created with the cancer treatment patient in mind (but can be used by anyone who has special skincare needs as well). These products avoid harsh ingredients and are very gentle which are essential qualities that are extremely important during cancer treatment.
Lindi Skin is developed by CEO Lindy Snider, with the help of doctors, scientists and input from a cancer patient focus group. A combination of the best ingredients and extensive medical research help produce products that can provide relief from the adverse affects of cancer treatment on the skin, without the preservatives and fragrances commonly found among skin care brands and are a major source of skin irritations. Lindi Face Wash is great for dry and irritated skin caused by chemotherapy; it's rich, moisturizing, soothing and a wonderful alternative for those allergic to soap and mild enough for a baby. You can follow the face wash with Lindi Face Serum or Lindi Face Moisturizer. The face serum is ultra-hydrating and relieves aggravated skin with a light hint of lavender, also available with a hint of citrus. The face moisturizer is for those with extremely dry skin, full of nutrients and anti-oxidants, non-greasy and feels like silk on the skin. In addition to face products, Lindi has a number of products for the body. The Lindi Body Wash continues to deliver moisturization after rinsing, is mild enough for compromised skin and great as a daily cleanser. Its moisturizing properties are enhanced when followed by Lindi Body Lotion or Lindi Soothing Balm. The body lotion helps the overall dryness that many people experience during cancer treatment and contains a unique blend of natural berry extracts. The balm remedies painful, cracked and peeling skin by providing intense treatment to those affected areas. All of the items mentioned and most of Lindi Skin's products (except the Lindi Skin Cooler Pad and Cooler Roll and the sunscreens) contain LSA Complex that can only be found in their products and is a unique blend of soothing and nourishing botanicals, such as Astazanthin (marine extract) an anti-oxidant 50 times more potent than Vitamin E, Bisabolol (extract of chamomile) anti-irritant and Curcumin (extract of Turmeric) which promotes wound healing and an assortment of other botanicals with anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and anti-bacterial properties. To learn more, view the complete line and purchase Lindi Skin, go to www.LindiSkin.com.
The Innovative Skincare brand creates highly effective, clinically proven skincare products that cause dramatic improvements to skin quality. Its team of physicians and pharmacognosists are known for major advancements in skincare and anti-aging; they use these same expertises to research and produce products that deliver immediate, safe and long term results. The iS Clinical line of Innovative Skincare consist of products that provide comfort to dry skin, itchy skin, hyperpigmentation, photosensitivity, radiation recall, rash, dermatitis and the scarring patients may experience while undergoing cancer treatments. The products from this line often requested by those undergoing cancer treatments are Poly-Vitamin Serum, Pro-Heal Serum and Super Serum. Poly-Vitamin Serum increases microcirculation, hydrates and smoothes, infuses and protects skin with anti-oxidants and encourages collagen production. It is able to heal the most ravaged and compromised skin; it's being used to treat radiation dermatitis (radiation burns from cancer treatment). The Poly-Vitamin Serum contains Vitamin B5 (Pantothonic Acid) to increase cellular metabolism, Vitamin B3 (Niacin) a powerful anti-oxidant essential for cellular metabolism and increasing microcirculation and Hyaluronic Acid for intense hydration. The use of Pro Heal Serum increases cellular integrity; controls hyperpigmentation caused by chemotherapy and radiation, promotes wound healing and improves skin's immune response. This serum contains Vitamin C, an anti-oxidant that increases collagen synthesis, prevent UV caused cellular mutations and promote skin healing, Olive Leaf Extract works with Vitamin C & E to reduce inflammation, Vitamin E to promote healing, reduce inflammation and protects against aging and photoaging. Other ingredients are Zinc Sulfate, Vitamin A and Mushroom Extract. The Super Serum is a powerful anti-oxidant that improves the appearance of scars and increases collagen production. Like Pro Heal Serum, Super Serum contains Vitamin C, along with Pentapeptide Amino Acids - they provide the protein building blocks our skin needs to repair and replenish, Polyporus Umbellatus Extract-evens pigmentation, Zinc Sulfate-reduces inflammation, promotes wound healing and improves skin immune response, Asiaticoside, Asiatic Acid and Madecassic Acid. Other products from the iS Clinical line are four other serums,1 eye gel, 4 cream complexes, l cleansing product, a body moisturizer and two professional use only masque. In addition to providing high quality skin care products, in 2003, Innovative Skincare created the iS Cancer Care program with the Washington Cancer Institute. The program conducts quarterly clinics where patients discuss self-esteem and treatment issues while receiving a special selection of iS Clinical and Innovative Skincare products. For more information about the iS Cancer Care program and purchasing information, visit www.isclinical.com
Even though these products are designed for the skin care needs of cancer treatment patients, Dr. Brooke A Jackson, Medical Director, Skin Wellness Center of Chicago (www.skinwellnesscenter.org) says, "It is always best to check with the oncologist or radiation oncologist to clear any topical treatment, particularly with radiation as some creams and ointment can affect the targeting of the radiation beam in the field of radiation." So please get the okay from your doctor before beginning any skin care regimens during cancer treatment.