Background: While many cases of latex allergy have been reported in Japanese health care workers (HCWs) since 1992, there have been no follow-up studies after removing latex from the workplace. We had previously replaced all working environment latex gloves and latex products with low-allergen or non-latex products. The purpose of the investigation was to evaluate the benefits of the latex allergy countermeasures that were taken in our hospital, and the effects of life guidance education. Methods: We investigated 16 latex-allergic HCWs in our hospital. We gave them a detailed questionnaire and tested them by a skin prick test (SPT) with latex extract and specific IgE antibodies against latex using the Pharmacia CAP RAST system, RAST FEIA. We compared these results with earlier results from the time of diagnosis. Results: According to the questionnaire, none of the HCWs had changed their work habits, though all were avoiding the use of latex products as much as possible. Of the 16 patients, 81.2% were eating foods for which cross reactivity with latex has been reported. However, the foods had not induced severe allergic symptoms. In the SPT, 62.5% of scores decreased and 81.2% of patients had decreases in specific IgE antibody levels. Conclusions: After avoiding latex products and following our educational suggestions, the patients' allergy symptoms had generally improved. This indicates that our countermeasures against latex allergy were largely successful.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Immunology and Allergy