Please Note: This Technical Information Bulletin (TIB) is currently under review by OSHA. OSHA is reviewing the medical literature and studies. Among other issues, OSHA is assessing the accuracy of the TIB’s use of dissimilar terms interchangeably, and examining the TIB’s reliance on protein levels rather than allergen level as the relevant factor for determining the allergenicity of natural rubber latex gloves. This TIB will be revised as appropriate. The updated TIB will be available soon.

Types of Reactions

Type Reaction Symptoms/Signs Cause Prevention / Management
Irritant Contact
scaling, drying,
cracking of skin
direct skin irritation by
gloves, powder,
incomplete hand drying
Obtain medical diagnosis,
avoid irritant product,
consider use of cotton glove
liners, consider alternative
Allergic Contact
(Type IV delayed
hypersensitivity or
allergic contact
blistering, itching,
crusting, (similar to
poison ivy reaction)
accelerators (e.g., thiurams,
carbamates, benzothiazoles)
processing chemicals
(e.g., biocides, antioxidants)

Consider penetration of
glove barrier by chemicals
Obtain medical diagnosis,
identify chemical.
Consider use of glove liners
such as cotton
Use alternative glove
material without chemical

Assure glove material is
suitable for intended use
(proper barrier)
NRL Allergy —
IgE/histamine mediated
(Type I immediate

A) Localized contact

which may be associated
with or progress to:

B) Generalized Reaction

Hives in area of
contact with NRL


Include: generalized
urticaria, rhinitis,
wheezing, swelling
of mouth, shortness
of breath. Can
progress to
anaphylactic shock
NRL proteins:
direct contact with or
breathing NRL proteins,
including glove powder
containing proteins, from
powdered gloves or the
Obtain medical diagnosis,
allergy consultation,
substitute non-NRL gloves
for affected worker and
other non-NRL products

Eliminate exposure to glove
powder — use of reduced
protein, powder free gloves
for coworkers

Clean NRL-containing
powder from environment

Consider NRL safe

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Last modified: Jan 12 2006