F. Bhabha, J. Cahill, A. Palmer, R.L. Nixon
Introduction: Repeated or prolonged exposure to natural rubber latex, a protein based product, can lead to the devel-opment of immediate hypersensitivity in susceptible individuals. Proteins speciﬁ cally associated with latex allergy have been found to adhere to glove powder present in disposable gloves, which have been strongly implicated as a major contributing factor in the development of latex allergy. However, there has been relatively little information in the literature about the likelihood of sensitization occurring from reusable, rather than disposable gloves, which has been recently summarized
Methods: A retrospective analysis was performed of the PatchCAMS © database for cases of latex allergy diagnosed at the Occupational Dermatology Clinic and Contact Dermatitis Clincs, Melbourne between 1993 and 2010.
Results: There were 168 cases of latex allergy diagnosed
in 7017 patients patch tested (and 7361 assessed overall).
Latex allergy was the primary diagnosis in 72 cases.
Although uncommon, we did ﬁ nd a number of cases of latex
allergy occurring in wearers of reusable gloves.
Discussion and conclusion: Powdered, disposable gloves are much more likely to be associated with the development of latex allergy than reusable gloves. However, it is important to realise that reusable gloves may be associated with latex allergy. Other risk factors for latex allergy in our patient cohort will also be presented.