FAQs on Latex Allergy:

What causes Latex Allergy?

A latex allergy is an allergic reaction to proteins found in natural rubber latex, most commonly used in latex gloves. Dipped rubber latex is the most common latex allergy.

 

Symptoms

A latex allergy can range from mild to severe. Below are some of the common symptoms experienced.

  • mild reactions: itching, nasal congestion, redness
  • moderate reactions: sneezing, runny nose, difficulty breathing, hives, itchy skin
  • severe reactions: anaphylaxis

 

Common Latex Products

The following are the common products made out of latex: 

  • rubber gloves
  • balloons
  • rubber bands
  • baby bottle nipples
  • condoms
  • blood pressure equipment
  • intravenous tubing
  • surgical masks

 

Who is at Risk?

If someone has repeatedly been exposed to latex products, they have a greater chance of getting a latex allergy. The following are people who have a higher risk of developing a latex allergy.

  • healthcare professionals
  • children with spina bifida
  • patients with recurrent medical procedures or surgeries
  • people who are exposed to latex in the workplace

 

Diagnosis, Prevention and Treatment

A latex allergy can be diagnosed through an allergy skin test, blood test or physical examination by an allergy specialist. There is no cure for a latex allergy. Avoidance is the best possible treatment for a latex allergy. People with severe latex allergies should carry epinephrine (know as an EpiPen) at all times and should consider wearing a medic-alert bracelet.

For severe allergic reactions, seek emergency medical attention.