Rubber accelerators play a significant role in glove-related occupational contact dermatitis, especially among health care workers. Currently, there is limited information readily available outlining the accelerators used in specific medical examination and surgical gloves.
The aim of this study was to ascertain the accelerators used in medical examination and surgical gloves for major glove manufacturers within the United States.
An initial Internet-based search was performed to establish relevant manufacturers and product lines, with subsequent inquiry with each corresponding company regarding accelerators used in each medical and surgical glove line.
Eleven glove manufacturers were identified and contacted. Responses were obtained from all manufacturers, but because of legal limitations, changes in product lines, or inability to supply necessary data, only 8 companies were able to be included in the final analysis, totaling data for 190 gloves. Carbamates were the most common accelerator, used in 90.5% (172/190) of gloves, whereas thiurams were used in only 11 gloves (5.8%). Eight companies surveyed are now advertising and offering touted accelerator-free gloves.
Accelerators are used in most examination and surgical gloves; however, manufacturers are now expanding their product offerings to include accelerator-free options.