Mar 01, By Curtis P. Hamann, MD, Pamela A.
Latex is a milky sap from plants like the tropical rubber tree. It contains a mixture of water, sugar and proteins. The sap is collected by drilling into the tree and used to make rubber items such as household gloves and medical gloves, shoes, tyres, balloons and condoms.
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Staci Violante, RDH, offers tips to dental offices on preventing latex allergic reactions. The glove is one of the first lines of the PPE combat. The universal precautions are designed to protect the healthcare worker against blood borne pathogens, mucous membranes, and non-intact skin exposures. During this time, it was advised for health-care workers who are exposed to blood to receive the immunization with HBV vaccine as an appendage to universal precautions.
Not all latex products are made from the natural source of latex. Some latex is made from man-made synthetic latex and these are unlikely to cause a reaction. Mild Reactions : Mild reactions begin with dermatitis or skin irritations in the areas the allergen is in contact with the skin.
Updated by: Sandra M. Allergy to natural rubber latex is an important clinical condition that occurred after the institution of universal precautions. There was a rapid rise in the production of latex gloves with the institution of universal precautions to meet the needs of health care workers.
Study record managers: refer to the Data Element Definitions if submitting registration or results information. This study wants to evaluate the safety of a latex safe protocol as proposed by the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy. In other words,the investigators hope to demonstrate that patients with known latex allergy or latex sensitisation can be treated safely in operating theatres without special requirements towards scheduling provided that all powdered latex gloves are removed from the OR environment preparation rooms, theatres, recovery room and surroundings.
The most noninvasive method of latex allergy testing is an in vitro assay for latex-specific IgE antibodies, which can be detected by either a radioallergosorbent test RAST or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay ELISA. The presence of antilatex IgE antibodies confirms sensitization but does not necessarily mean the patient will develop a symptomatic reaction following exposure. Due to the unavailability of a standardized reagent for the skin prick test in the United States, evaluation of latex-specific serum IgE levels may be the best alternative. If there is no evidence of allergic reaction within 15 minutes, place the glove on the whole hand for an additional 15 minutes.
Steps 2, 3, 4 are not necessary if the operating suite does not use any powdered latex gloves. P atients must only be operated on in a clean operating room ie free of powdered latex gloves for at least 3 hours. Furniture and equipment in the operating room must be washed down by staff wearing synthetic gloves to remove latex powder.