Severe latex allergy is an increasingly common problem in the United States and Europe. Currently, there are as many as 17 million Americans sensitized to latex. Occupational exposure to latex has sensitized 8% to 12% of health care workers (though some estimate this number could be as high as 17%). The increase in latex allergy cases has been correlated with prolonged exposure to latex products, primarily through the use of latex gloves (the use of which has increased enormously since the 1980’s as a universal precaution against AIDS and Hepatitis B).
Developing latex allergy is particularly dangerous because in many cases the first sign of allergy is anaphylaxis.
The Pacific Northwest Foundation has done extensive research on latex allergy. To the right you will find links to our various publications on the subject. You will also find our research on the subject of the relationship of allergies to toxic reactions and chronic acute illnesses, as well as a list of foods that are cross reactive for people with latex allergy.