Oncology Nurse Allows Patient to Shave His Head


A professional staff nurse at UPMC Shadyside found a unique way to help a young woman cope with hair loss due to chemotherapy treatment: He let her shave his head.

As a result, Sean Capet’s hospital colleagues nominated him for a DAISY Award, an honor given to nurses to recognize the care they show to patients and their families every day.  

SEAN CAPETS PHOTOThe 19-year-old female patient was newly diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and started losing her hair due to chemotherapy treatments. Capets realized how difficult this was for her so he agreed to let her shave his head. In the end, Capets needed to see a professional barber to correct some imperfections in the cut, but the experience made the patient laugh and helped make her more comfortable with the entire experience.

“This event could have been very traumatic for this woman, but Sean provided support in her healing process. For this reason, we nominate him for this award and appreciate his contribution,” his colleagues wrote in a nomination letter.

Capets received the award from Sandy Rader, chief nursing officer, and vice president, Patient Care Services, UPMC Shadyside.

“Sean really is a wonderful example of the kinds of selfless nurses we have working here at UPMC,” Rader said. “He showed great compassion to this patient to help her through a traumatic time and for that we are very grateful.”