A patient was concerned about hair loss following chemotherapy treatment. I recommended drinking unflavored powdered gelatin—one packet mixed with juice—each week. She noticed regrowth within 14 days.
—Betty Louise Stewart, RN, FNP, Marietta, Ga.
Whether the above observation is anecdotal in only this single individual or reproducible cannot be determined based on the information provided. A literature search for the terms “gelatin hair loss” with or without including “treatment or chemotherapy” elicits a paucity of relevant information. A study for hair loss of the “diffuse type” tested a combination oral therapy consisting of a daily dose of 18,000 IU retinol, 70 mg l-cystine, and 700 mg gelatin. No systemic side effects were detected, and the investigators concluded that long-term oral therapy with high doses of l-cystine and gelatin in combination with vitamin A may have beneficial effects on diffuse hair loss (Hautarzt. 1989;40:490-495).
—Philip R. Cohen, MD (99-19)