Epworth wig salon

July 4, 2019| Epworth News /

Epworth Healthcare’s free wig service is empowering cancer patients

For many women, losing their hair during cancer treatment can be like losing a part of their identity.

Epworth Healthcare’s wig salon aims to restore these women’s confidence and sense of self as they face the battle of their lives.

Natalie Salvo has first-hand experience with cancer and volunteers at the health service’s Richmond hospital.

“Looking in the mirror and seeing you are bald can be so confronting, particularly for women, and a reminder of just how sick you are,” she said.


The free service provides a wig and fitting, along with other accessories, for Epworth cancer patients.

“Some women want hair that looks exactly the same as their own hair, so we’ll try to match as best as we can, some women want to try something completely different,” Ms Salvo said.

“It’s great to be able to put a smile on someone’s face, some of them walk out looking like they can conquer the world.”

Volunteering has also helped Ms Salvo, who is a cancer patient at Epworth.

“I understand what these ladies are going through and feel privileged to be able to help them,” she said.

“A lot of them are overwhelmed that the wigs are free.”

The Templestowe Lower woman was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer in April 2017.

“My whole world came crashing down. No one can prepare you for hearing those words,” she said.

The tumour had eaten into the bone in her spine and spread to her liver.

She is now in remission after surgery and 17 rounds of chemotherapy, but continued to have targeted therapy.

Ms Salvo warned women to get checked out if they noticed the slightest change in their breasts.

“It was such a shock to me because I felt so well, I only had it checked out because I felt a mass and it wasn’t that pea-sized lump everybody focuses on,” she said.

“If you notice the slightest discolouration of the skin, don’t be afraid to get it checked out.

“If you do have breast cancer catching it early is so important.”

Epworth Healthcare’s Wig Salon was originally funded by a bequest, and is made possible by donations to the Epworth Medical Foundation.

For more information about Epworth Healthcare’s Wig Salon visit the website.

This article was originally published in Leader Newspapers - https://www.heraldsun.com.au/leader/news/epworth-healthcares-free-wig-service-is-empowering-cancer-patients/news-story/ff43a26be46312e412d6c2ef28aa969c


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