There are three types of clinical reactions that occur to a finished natural rubber product. IgE mediated allergic reactions Type I — This allergy may be life threatening and is the clinical problem that clinicians and patients are most concerned about preventing. This reaction is mediated by allergic antibody called IgE directed against retained proteins in latex products.
Explanations for this apparent epidemic have ranged from a failure to recognize previous allergic reactions to changes in the way latex products are manufactured. The most convincing epidemiological explanation, however, is that the sudden increase in sensitization resulted from greater exposure to latex following the adoption of universal precautions to prevent transmission of bloodborne pathogens in The most important common denominator is frequent exposure to latex on an occupational or medical basis.
Groups at increased risk therefore include physicians, nurses, dentists, and patients who have undergone multiple operations.
Once a latex allergy has developed, it can remain unchanged, evolve slowly, or progress rapidly from an annoying dermatitis to life-threatening anaphylaxis.
The medical, vocational, and medicolegal implications of this growing problem are obvious. For that reason, it is essential for all healthcare providers to understand what causes latex allergy, how to recognize it, and how to manage it. Latex cis-1,4-polyisoprene is not a substance that is synthesized in a laboratory.
It is actually a natural product obtained from the Brazilian rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensis. Its biological function is to coagulate and seal any wounds to the plant.
Latex-containing fluid a cytosol is collected from slits in the bark of the tree, much the way maple syrup is harvested. This milky fluid is pooled, treated with ammonia as a preservative and stabilizer, then centrifuged to concentrate the solids.
Natural rubber latex then goes through additional processing steps such as heat-treatment with sulfur, a process called vulcanization, which gives rubber added elasticity, strength, stability, and heat-resistance. Various chemicals may also be added in order to accelerate the curing process or impart desired properties to the finished product Table 1.
Latex can be used to make two kinds of products. One type is crepe or hardened rubber products, which are extruded or compression-molded to form objects like tires and toys.
Dipped products like gloves and condoms, which retain more allergens, are formed on ceramic molds. After being coated with a coagulating salt to accelerate gelling, the mold is submerged in liquid latex, much like dipping a candle wick in melted wax.
The emulsion-coated mold is then cured in an oven and the finished object removed. Some products, like latex gloves, may also be washed, chemically treated, or coated with cornstarch powder to permit easier donning and removal.
What Makes Latex Allergenic? Latex allergens consist of a number of proteins and polypeptides. At least polypeptides have been identified in natural rubber latex, and over sixty of them are potential allergens capable of binding IgE.
Ten polypeptides designated as Hev b 1 to Hev b 8 are especially frequent sensitizers, including a 14 kilodalton kd peptide known as rubber elongation factor Hev b 1 and a 4. Latex-contaminated cornstarch lubricating powder allows these allergens to become airborne, exposing nearby individuals to latex without actual contact.
The powder, which adsorbs latex proteins, is dispersed into the ambient air when gloves are removed. Another source of allergens in latex products are the chemical additives used in processing. These chemicals, chiefly the accelerators used to speed the curing process, are responsible for most cases of contact dermatitis.
A common bacterial contaminant generated during the manufacturing process is also thought to contribute to the development of latex allergy.
Like other allergies, the risk of sensitization to an allergen like latex increases under two circumstances: All high-risk groups can be explained on the basis of one or both of these characteristics.Summary on Latex Allergy in the Workplace (from JADA) Latex Allergy in the Workplace first talks about the background of the obvious problem of Latex allergy.
Natural rubber latex is extracted from the milky sap of the rubber tree Hevea Braziliensis namely in Malaysia. The history of Latex gloves began over a hundred years ago.
Type I natural rubber latex allergy is an IgE (immune) mediated reaction to proteins found in the Hevea brasiliensis tree, a type of rubber tree. Testing for type I natural rubber latex allergy is through blood testing to determine if the patient is producing IgE antibodies to . Latex allergies.
Tell your doctors, dentists and other health care providers about your child’s latex allergy. Ask them to put a note in your child’s medical chart about your child’s allergy. Also remind them of the allergy before any medical procedure or test. Latex allergy problems during dental, medical or surgical procedures can be prevented by warning health care providers about latex allergy before any test or treatment.
Latex allergic people can receive medical or dental care in a latex-safe area. In the absence of a US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-cleared latex skin testing reagent, in vitro tests remain important for the diagnosis of latex allergy.
Objectives To evaluate the performance characteristics of IMMULITE 3gAllergy (Immulite), a third-generation, FDA-cleared, continuous random-access immunoanalyzer, for the quantification of latex specific IgE.
Mini-Review: Class I Chitinases and the Latex-Fruit Syndrome Hospital de Gran Canaria Dr. Negrín, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain SUMMARY KEYW ORDS The prevalence of sensitization to natural rubber latex in the general population is around 1%.
However, occupational latex allergy is the latex allergy is considerably higher in .