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Glove-Related Hand Urticaria: Causes and Preventions

Glove-related hand urticaria is a skin condition which affects workers in industries where tight disposable gloves are worn frequently.

Professionals such as nurses, surgeons, hairdressers and dentists are just a few examples of those who are required to wear disposable gloves at work.

When these professionals put on and remove gloves made from materials like latex it can irritate the skin on their hands and cause urticaria.

There are actions which can be taken to prevent the development of the condition and knowing what causes it is a good place to start.


Glove-Related Hand Urticaria Symptoms

Symptoms of the condition are similar to that of other skin conditions like Eczema or Contact Dermatitis.

A urticarial reaction will consist of the following;

  • A red rash
  • Intense itching
  • Swelling around the rash

The rash will usually occur immediately upon glove application, but reactions have also been recorded which were delayed.

Causes of Urticaria

Glove-related hand urticaria can occur following exposure to any type of disposable gloves.

What causes the rash is the pressure of application as opposed to the material of the glove that induces the reaction.

Furthermore, frequent daily use of gloves increases the likelihood of developing glove-related hand urticaria, so workers in professions such as healthcare are more prone to this.

This is because the friction of putting on and taking off the gloves can cause a reaction which results in the condition developing.

Preventions of Urticaria

There are ways in which glove-related hand urticaria can be prevented.

For example you can wear larger gloves, take time to carefully apply gloves, or take antihistamines to reduce the reaction you have when using the gloves.

Despite these preventative measures it is not always possible to stop the development of glove-related hand urticaria.

If you work in a profession which requires you to change gloves very frequently, such as in healthcare, then you may not have time to carefully apply your gloves or it may be impractical to wear larger gloves.

If this is the case, then your employer should be as supportive as possible and try to assist you in preventing the condition or at the very least provide gloves which are less likely to cause irritation.

What Can We Do?

If you have been diagnosed with glove-related hand urticaria by a medical professional and the condition has developed due to conditions in your workplace where your employer failed to act sufficiently to prevent this, then you might be able to make an industrial disease claim.

We understand that it is an uncomfortable and painful condition to have, and believe that you should not have to suffer.

If you would like to speak to our friendly and helpful industrial disease solicitors then please give us a call on 0844 414 0667.

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