A Review of Natural-Rubber Latex Allergy in Health Care Workers

Peter M. Ranta, Dennis R. Ownby

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


This brief review of natural-rubber latex (NRL) allergy in health care workers (HCWs) includes the definition of NRL allergy and data on its epidemiology, pathogenesis, diagnostic algorithm, management, long-term outcomes, economic impact, cost-effectiveness of changing facilities to a latex-free environment, and prevention. The data presented suggest that an individual with type I or type IV hypersensitivity to NRL should be able to continue to work in the workplace with careful evaluation and reasonable accommodations. Reducing exposure to latex is a safe and more economical alternative to complete removal of the individual from the place of employment. The use of low-allergen, nonpowdered NRL gloves substantially reduces airborne exposure to latex in most health care settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-256
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 15 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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