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Latex is a rubber product made from sap of rubber trees. Many items at home, in the community and in a hospital may contain latex. These include, but are not limited to the following:
(All of the items used at Cincinnati Children's are latex safe.)
Any item that is light brown and can be stretched may contain latex. The items that are listed can be replaced with items made from vinyl, plastic, or silicone.
Some children may have a contact sensitivity to latex. Other children may have an actual allergy to Latex. Reactions can be seen when products made from latex come in contact with the child's skin, mucous membranes in the mouth, genitals, bladder, or rectum, or the bloodstream (during surgery). Some children may also react when blowing up a rubber balloon or breathing in powder from the inside of latex gloves. When children have a sensitivity to latex, they can get redness, itching or swelling where the latex touched the skin. When a child with a latex allergy comes in contact with a latex product, they can have the following symptoms:
In some cases, severe reactions ("anaphylactic shock") can occur and the child may have problems breathing, experience chest tightness, or have swelling of his/her throat or tongue. Severe reactions require emergency treatment. The symptoms of a latex allergy may look like other medical conditions. Always consult your child's physician for a diagnosis.
Some children are more likely to become latex sensitive. These are children who have frequent exposure to latex from medical procedures, including:
Some commonly eaten foods which contain some of the same proteins as latex include the following examples:
Your child's caregivers include dentists, physical/occupational therapists, physicians and nurses, teachers, daycare providers and babysitters, and friends and family members. Call your doctor or the Allergy Division at Cincinnati Children's if you have other questions
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