When a person’s immune system attacks natural rubber latex, which is utilised in many items, they develop a latex allergy. Latex allergy symptoms can range from moderate to severe, and can even be deadly. There is no way to stop it. Latex should be avoided by anyone who have this allergy.

Allergists are experts who can help you manage your allergies and asthma so you may live the life you desire. If you think you could be allergic to latex, you should consult an allergist.

Latex Allergy is more common in the following people:

  • People who work with latex gloves on a regular basis, such as health care professionals and others.
  • People who have undergone several operations (e.g., ten or more), such as youngsters with spina bifida.
  • People who work in the rubber business and are frequently exposed to natural rubber latex
  • Those who suffer from other allergies, such as hay fever (allergic rhinitis) or food allergies.

What is Latex?

The term “Latex” is used in this brochure to refer to natural rubber latex, which is made from a milky fluid obtained from the rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensis. Synthetic rubber is frequently referred to as “latex,” although it does not contain the proteins that cause allergic responses.

What is a Latex Allergy, and How can you know if you have one?

If your kid has a latex allergy, their body generates allergic antibodies against one or more proteins present in natural rubber latex. Allergies to latex are quite rare. Latex allergies are thought to affect fewer than one percent of the population.

The following are some examples of allergic reactions:

  • Bee colonies (with direct contact to latex).
  • When Breathed, Hay Fever or Asthma.
  • Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening allergic reaction that occurs when a (life-threatening allergic episodes).
Define of Latex Allergy | Symptoms and Types of Latex Allergy | 2021
Latex Allergy

 

Anaphylaxis is an uncommon reaction that occurs following direct contact with mucous membranes such as the mouth, nose, throat, vaginal canal, or rectum in the most sensitive people. This can happen when latex gloves are worn during a surgical procedure or medical treatment.

Contact dermatitis from latex and non-latex gloves is often mistaken for a latex allergy. These minor skin irritations aren’t life-threatening, but if left untreated, they can develop into a latex allergy.

Latex Allergy may affect Anybody.

Latex Allergies may affect anybody, although they are more frequent in persons who are consistently exposed to latex. People with hay fever who are also exposed to latex on a daily basis appear to be at an increased risk of acquiring a latex allergy.

Health care personnel, rubber industry employees, and persons who have had a number of surgeries, especially as children, are among those who come into contact with latex products on a daily basis.

Due to the quantity of medical goods containing latex that people with spina bifida and urinary system difficulties use to manage their illness, they are more likely to develop latex allergy.

People who are allergic to specific foods may acquire a latex allergy as well. Bananas, avocados, kiwi fruit, mangoes, chestnuts, potatoes, and tomatoes are among these foods. These foods include proteins that are comparable to those found in latex.

What is the prevalence of latex allergy?

While latex allergy is uncommon, affecting just 1 to 6% of the population, it is significantly more frequent among personnel in the medical and dental fields. In reality, latex allergy affects 10-17 percent of healthcare professionals and 33.8 percent of dental care employees.

Furthermore, latex allergy has been detected in 17% of restaurant workers. Latex allergy is more common in those who had many procedures, such as people with spina bifida.

What are the people who are in danger?

People who have regular direct contact with latex due to their employment or medical condition are at danger. Health-care and dental personnel are the ones who are most likely to be exposed to latex, owing to the use of powdered latex gloves that are easy to put on. The latex proteins bond to the powder, which causes it to become airborne. When breathed, it can trigger an allergic reaction.

Define of Latex Allergy | Symptoms and Types of Latex Allergy | 2021
Latex Allergy

The following people are at higher risk:

  1. People who have a lot of allergies
  2. youngsters with spina bifida or children who have had several operations at a young age.
  3. health-care employees, such as doctors, nurses, surgical staff, dentists, dental hygienists, EMTs, and lab technicians.
  4. persons who have to undergo medical operations on a regular basis, such as catheterization.
  5. anybody employed in the latex rubber business (tyre factories, rubber manufacturers, and glove manufacturers);
  6. nannies; o nannies; nannies.
  7. employees in the food service industry.
  8. housekeeping personnel in and out of health-care institutions.
  9. members of the law enforcement community.
  10. Firefighters.
  11. staff of funeral homes.
  12. Hairdressers.
  13. People who have had a history of increasing allergic reactions to foods that have been shown to cross react with natural rubber latex (see below).

Symptoms

Latex allergy symptoms can range from minor to severe, including:

  • Watery, itchy, red eyes
  • Runny nose or sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Hives or rashes
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Breathing problems

Latex gloves can cause lumps, blisters, fissures, or red, raised patches on the hands for certain people. After coming into touch with latex, these symptoms commonly develop 12 to 36 hours later. These symptoms can be alleviated by switching to non-latex gloves, utilising glove liners, and paying more attention to hand hygiene.

Define of Latex Allergy | Symptoms and Types of Latex Allergy | 2021
Latex Allergy

A person who is strongly allergic to latex might suffer from anaphylactic shock, which is a life-threatening allergic response.

Among the symptoms are:

  • Breathing difficulties
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Wheezing
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • A strong or rapid pulse

An anaphylactic response requires prompt medical intervention.

People with Latex Allergies may also have Dietary Sensitivities.

Some proteins found in latex are also found in foods, and some latex allergy sufferers report that specific meals induce itchy tongue and throat swelling. Bananas, avocados, kiwis, passionfruit, plums, strawberries, and tomatoes are among the most commonly mentioned foods. Unless they create issues, these foods do not need to be avoided regularly.

What Are Foods That Are Latex Cross-Reactive?

Proteins similar to those found in rubber tree sap can be found in some foods. “Latex reactive foods” can trigger a response in those with latex allergies. Latex-Food Syndrome or Latex-Fruit Allergy are two terms used to describe this condition.

Fruit and nuts, in particular, are Latex Reactive Foods.

  • Avocado
  • Banana
  • Chestnut
  • Kiwi
  • Apple
  • Carrot
  • Celery
  • Papaya
  • Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Melons

Points to Remember

  • Protein in natural rubber latex might induce allergic responses. This protein is not used in the manufacture of synthetic latex products, such as nitrile and vinyl.1
  • The US Food and Drug Administration has prohibited powdered latex gloves due to the role powder plays in provoking allergic reactions in those who are sensitive to latex.
  • Oil-based hand creams can harm latex gloves and make allergic responses more likely.

What are the different Types of latex allergies?

Natural rubber latex can cause two types of allergy responses. The following are examples of latex reactions:

Define of Latex Allergy | Symptoms and Types of Latex Allergy | 2021
Latex Allergy

1. IgE-Mediated Latex Allergy (Type I)

A type I latex allergy is triggered by a protein found in the natural rubber tree. The immune system produces IgE (immunoglobulin E) antibodies in response to latex exposure. The symptoms of an allergic response are caused by these antibodies. Latex allergies triggered by IgE can be fatal.

2. Contact Dermatitis Mediated by cells (Type IV):

This allergy produces itching and inflammation on the skin (contact dermatitis). Blisters can develop on the skin and exude fluids. Cell-mediated contact dermatitis isn’t life-threatening, but it can be aggravating, and it can sometimes lead to IgE-mediated latex allergy.

Treatment

There is no treatment for latex allergy, despite the fact that drugs exist to alleviate the symptoms. Avoiding latex-containing goods is the only method to avoid a latex allergy response.

Latex may get into touch with you despite your best attempts to prevent it. If you’ve ever had a severe allergic response to latex, you should keep injectable epinephrine on hand at all times. If you experience an anaphylactic response, go to the emergency hospital right away for an adrenaline injection (epinephrine).

Antihistamines or corticosteroids, which you can take after being exposed to latex to manage your response and reduce discomfort, may be prescribed by your doctor in the case of less severe reactions.

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