The Affects of Latex to Sensitive or Allergic Patients

Contact Dermatitis or Irritant Contact Dermatitis

The most common reaction to latex sensitivity is contact dermatitis.  Contact dermatitis is a condition on the skin that causes irritation, tearing, and pain. Latex reactions from gloves typically cause a rash to develop on the hands causing washing more difficult. It is believed victims of contact dermatitis have a lower hand hygiene compliance rate as the contact dermatitis deters the workers from washing hands regularly. In the end, victims can experience severe damage to the skin where redness, soreness, dryness, cracking, and other symptoms can be witnessed.

Immediate Allergic Reaction

The greatest fear for infection control practitioners regarding latex allergies is the reactions caused by latex in certain patients. Allergic reactions symptoms will vary, but is severe enough to cause death in patients. Reactions will differ based on the level of sensitivity and the exposure of latex. Latex contact that is directly made internally will have a more severe effect. This includes breathing latex powder or eating foods that is tainted with latex products. 


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