Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Can You Use Silicone If You Are Allergic To Latex?

Silicone rubber is the best alternative to latex rubber to use for manufacturing of various medical products, including medical/surgical gloves. Therefore, if you are allergic to latex, you should definitely go with the alternative i.e. silicone rubber.

Silicon is the perfect option for people often suffer from latex allergies. Reason for this is that Silicon is of inert type completely, because of which it is unable to elicit any allergic reaction, transmit electric impulses or affects your body in any way whenever you opt to use it topically. Because of this, today, a large number of skincare products and deodorants, including gloves and other medical products come with silicone instead of latex. Moreover, in this blog post, you will come to know many aspects on Silicone and its key benefits to latex allergic people.

Can You Use Silicone If You Are Allergic To Latex?

Latex Vs Silicone

Latex rubbers and silicone rubbers come with many distinct differences, among which the key difference is latex is one of the natural products, while silicone is artificial. Consumers thus get options to select between latex and silicone versions of different plastic products, which include caulking, pacifiers and rubber bands, along with gloves and medical/surgical products. The prime features responsible to differentiate silicone products from the counterpart latex products include the following-

  • Silicone is a clear type of synthetic product that undergoes with various tests to make sure about product safety and it comes with relatively higher amount of durability as compared to latex.
  • Silicon products are able to retain their actual shape in a better way as compared to those made by using latex.
  • With the passage of time, latex may start to break down and indicates wear and tear problems because of its natural composition. On the other side, you may not find any type of aging problem with silicone.
  • A majority of professionals working in any healthcare unit experiences allergic reactions within only 30-minutes of their contact with any latex-based product and suffer from skin redness and itching problems. Unlike latex, silicone rubber does not cause any allergic reaction.
  • Silicone comes with relatively higher resistance to heat as compared to latex. This is a significant factor while we have to select in between silicone and latex sealant.
  • Latex-based products come with small and non-hazardous nitrosamines compounds, known commonly as carcinogens, while you may not found any such compound in Silicon products.

Latex materials are of highly porous and they often tend to harbor higher amount of bacteria as compared to any silicon-based product.

Why Silicone is an Excellent Alternative to Design Medical Devices

Biocompatibility

As an odorless and tasteless product, liquid silicone rubber shows relatively higher compatibility with body fluids and human tissues. Because of this, LSR hinders the growth of bacteria and avoids any stain or erosion to any other material. Furthermore, medical grade of silicone rubber has successfully met guidelines related ISO, FDA and Tripartite biocompatibilities for a variety of medical products.

Resistivity to Chemicals

Silicon has proved to be resistance from ammonia, water, acids and other types of oxidizing chemicals.

Strong Insulation Properties Suitable for Electrical Applications

Silicon comes with strong insulation properties to become competent and suitable for different types/forms of electrical applications. Silicone comes with non-conductive features to maintain the required dielectric strength even in excessive thermal environments to surpass the performance done by latex or any other material.

Enough Tensile Strength and Elongation

LSR comes with tensile strength and improved elongation. Moreover, you expect to get a huge flexibility and low compression with silicone.

Temperature/Thermal Resistance

Unlike any other elastic or rubber product, silicone comes with higher stability ranging from 75degree Fahrenheit to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Because of this, customers may use varieties of techniques or methods to achieve sterilization, which include steam autoclaving, E-beam irradiation and gamma or ETO gas.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: September 7, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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