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Latex Allergy Safety and Health Topics
Latex Allergy

Allergy to latex was first recognized in the late 1970s. Since then, it has become a major health concern as an increased number of people in the workplace are affected. Health care workers exposed to latex gloves or medical products containing latex are especially at risk. It is estimated that 8-12% of health care workers are latex sensitive. Between 1988-1992, the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) received more than 1,000 reports of adverse health effects from exposure to latex, including 15 deaths due to such exposure.

As used in this topic, latex refers to the natural rubber latex manufactured from a milky fluid that is primarily obtained from the rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis). Some synthetic rubber materials may be referred to as "latex" but do not contain the natural rubber proteins responsible for latex allergy symptoms.

The following questions link to information relevant to latex allergy in the workplace.
OSHA Standards What OSHA standards apply?
Standards | Standard Interpretations
Hazard Recognition What is latex allergy?

Possible Solutions What are some examples of possible solutions for workplace hazards?

Additional Information What additional information is available?
Related Safety and Health Topics Pages
 Safety and
 Health Topics
  Latex Allergy
  OSHA Standards
  Hazard Recognition
  Possible Solutions
Content Reviewed 09/25/2008

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Page last updated: 10/01/2008