1. The client/caregiver can define latex allergy.
    1. Latex sensitivity is an allergic response to the protein in latex.
    2. Latex gloves are often coated with powder that gives the latex particles the ability to become airborne.
    3. Latex allergy symptoms can range from mild to severe.
  2. The client/caregiver can define the two types of allergic reaction to latex.
    1. Contact dermatitis is usually a delayed localized skin reaction that occurs within 6 to 8 hours of contact and can last several days. The most common place of reaction is the hands.
    2. Immediate hypersensitivity is an instant system reaction of swelling, itching, respiratory distress, hypotension, and even death.
    3. General symptoms of latex allergy can be as follows:
      • Itchy, red, or watery eyes
      • Sneezing or runny nose
      • Coughing
      • Rash or hives
      • Chest tightness and shortness of breath
      • Shock
  3. The client/caregiver can list common items containing latex found in the health care facility.
    • Medical gloves
    • Medication vial stoppers
    • Band-aids
    • Stethoscope tubing
    • Urinary catheters
    • Tourniquets
    • Blood pressure cuff and tubing
    • Intravenous injection ports
  4. The client/caregiver can list common items containing latex in the home or work areas.
    • Balloons
    • Rubber toys
    • Pacifiers and baby bottle nipples
    • Rubber bands
    • Adhesive tape
    • Diapers and sanitary pads
    • Condoms
    • Dental bands
  5. The client/caregiver can list ways to deal with latex allergy.
    1. Avoid direct exposure to latex.
    2. Educate yourself to which products contain latex.
    3. Wear a medical alert bracelet or identification.
    4. Inform any employer of your allergy.
    5. Discuss with your physician the severity of your allergy and whether you could benefit from use of epinephrine self- injection pen.


American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology

CDC National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety


Cohen, B. J., & Taylor, J. J. (2005). Memmler’s the human body in health and disease (10th ed.). Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Hitchcock, J. E., Schubert, P. E., & Thomas, S. A. (2003). Community health nursing: Caring in action. Clifton Park, NY: Thomson Delmar Learning.
Latex allergy: A prevention guide (NIOSH Publication No. 98- 113). (1999). National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Washington DC.
Timby, B. K., & Smith, N. C. (2003). Introductory medical- surgical nursing (8th ed.). Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

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