Latex allergies are a growing concern in the healthcare industry1. Because the true extent of allergic sensitivity is not fully known, the concern is a priority. In a recent market research study 93 percent of surgeons and nurses in Europe have a moderate or high concern with the risk of latex-allergic reaction from latex surgical gloves2.
Even though the prevalence of latex allergy in the general population is low, less than one percent, there is still a risk. Some studies show that up to six percent of the population can be latex sensitized1,3.
- The risk percentage for healthcare professionals becoming sensitized to latex ranges from 8-17 percent3
- The prevalence rate for latex sensitivity is 65 percent in patients with spina bifida4
- The most important factor that exacerbates a person’s likelihood of being sensitized to latex allergies is the degree of exposure to latex5
Allergic sensitivity and reactions are a concern for hospitals, as they can reduce efficiency:
- Unforeseen surgical and postoperative complications
- The need to tear down the entire operating room and replace with latex-free equipment
- Lost working hours for healthcare professionals
- Latex allergy is an important medical problem and to minimize healthcare professionals’ and patients’ risk for allergic reactions to latex, more and more healthcare facilities use only synthetic surgical gloves
How latex is a risk and how synthetic gloves can help
Exposure is the number one factor that increases the likelihood of developing sensitivity to latex5. Healthcare professionals suffer an 8 to 17 percent risk, compared to the one percent prevalence in the general public.
An increasing number of healthcare facilities choose to stock only synthetic gloves – reducing the risk for exposing latex-allergic individuals, removing the need for stocking two types of gloves and leading to greater efficiencies.
Synthetic surgical gloves can:
- Prevent reactions or anaphylactic shock – for both patients and healthcare professionals
- Prevent initial sensitization of non-sensitized persons
Synthetic surgical gloves are cost-efficient:
- Reduce unnecessary costs and suffering – postoperative complications, for instance
- Achieve higher puncture resistance with our puncture indication system6
- Standardized inventory with 100 percent latex-free equipment optimizes storage facilities and removes the worry of potential allergies