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Okla Nurse. 1997 Oct-Dec;42(4):32-3.

American Nurses Association. Position statement on latex allergy.


Natural rubber latex allergy is a serious medical problem for a growing number of patients and a disabling occupational disease among health care workers. Latex allergy develops from exposure to natural rubber latex, a plant cytosol that is used extensively to manufacture medical gloves, other medical devices, and numerous consumer products. Allergic reactions to latex range from skin disease to asthma and anaphylaxis that can result in chronic illness, disability, career loss, hardship, and death. There is no treatment for latex allergy except complete avoidance of latex. Patients and health care providers must be assured safety from iatrogenic sensitization and allergic reactions to latex. Therefore, the American Nurses Association supports immediate interventions to reduce the risk of latex sensitization and ensure safe outcomes for latex-sensitized patients and personnel in all health care settings. Successful interventions will require collaboration between health care providers and administrators, with support from the research community, government agencies, manufacturers, professional organizations, sensitized patients, and patient advocacy groups.

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