Rising number of skin problems due to glove use

Industry-players recognize rising number of skin problems due to glove use

It is remarkable that major industry-players not only recognize the rising number of skin problems among healthcare workers, but also underline that the industry up till now has no answer in terms of relevant products. Obviously, this is the very reason for the introduction of micro type non latex and accelerator free surgical gloves by Ansell. The fact that these new synthetic gloves are labeled as “accelerator free” is emphasized in numerous press releases. Actually, given the growing interest in occupational related skin problems due to glove use, already quite some manufacturers are offering accelerator free products. Accelerator free is a good start but does not mean that gloves are manufactured without the use of any (other) chemicals.

Chemical accelerators such as thiurams, mercaptobenzothiazoles and dithiocarbamates play an important role in the so-called vulcanization process, one of the critical steps in glove manufacturing. However, users should be aware that there are much more chemicals or residues of chemicals that could trigger skin problems or so-called (allergic) contact dermatitis. Specifically, replacing one chemical by another chemical could seem relevant for now, but can later prove insufficient. Users should ask the question: “How chemical residue free is an accelerator free glove?” The French study and research group on contact dermatitis GERDA published a review article of Marie-Bernadette Cleenewerck in Eur J Dermatol (EJD, vol. 20, no 4, July-August 2010) in which she concludes that in order to recommend appropriate substitution gloves, it is important to know their chemical composition exactly. Furthermore, the conclusion is made that due to changes in manufacturing processes and the composition of medical and surgical gloves, users should remain vigilant and follow the latest updates in the future. The fact that not only in Japan, but all over the world synthetic product related type 4 allergies are on the rise means there is a collective reaction to a widespread trend of allergy.

We know to have the answer. Our MPXX™ technology, the patented batch washing process, is able to reduce not only NRL allergens to unquantifiable levels but also chemical residues to undetectable levels. We deal with both the allergy problems type I and IV, still enabling surgeons all over the world to fully benefit from the merits of Natural Rubber Latex. Using this technology we currently produce the cleanest glove in the world.

(Excerpt from press release)
25/July/2013, Tokyo, Japan, Ansell, a global leader in medical protection solutions, today announced that Ansell Healthcare Japan Co., LTD. will release Japan’s first micro type non-latex accelerator-free surgical gloves on August 1, 2013.
According to a survey conducted by Ansell Healthcare Japan at JSEI (the Annual Meeting of Japanese Society of Environmental Infections) held this past March, more than 70 percent of healthcare professionals are plagued with skin irritation, a recurring occupational disease.