Prevalence of evaluation for latex allergy and association with practice characteristics in United States dermatologists: Results of a cross-sectional survey

Erin M. Warshaw, David Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Natural rubber latex allergy is a potentially life-threatening, immunoglobin E (IgE) mediated reaction. Despite great strides in identification of high-risk groups, methods for diagnosis remain limited in the United States and most evaluations are performed by allergists. Objective: The objective of this study was to estimate the prevalence of evaluation for latex allergy and association with practice characteristics in United States dermatologists. Methods: A cross-sectional survey of one third of United States Fellows of the American Academy of Dermatology. Results: The survey response rate was 43%. Of responding dermatologists, 17% stated that they evaluate patients for latex allergy, most commonly with a radioallergosorbent (RAST) or use test. Only 3.6% stated that they perform prick or scratch tests for latex allergy in their office, and most of these dermatologists (86%) prepare their own latex prick test solutions. Evaluation for latex allergy was significantly associated with patch testing, photopatch testing, an interest in contact dermatitis, and number of contact dermatitis books owned, but not with number of years in practice. Conclusions: Most United States dermatologists do not evaluate patients for latex allergy, most likely because of lack of available antigens and because methods for diagnosing latex allergy are not familiar to most dermatologists.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-145
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Contact Dermatitis
Volume12
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
From the Department of Dermatology and the Center for Chronic Disease Outcomes Research, Minneapolis VA Medical Center; and the Department of Dermatology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN. Supported by the Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Presented, in part, at the American Contact Dermatitis Society Meeting Hershey, Pennsylvania, July 1999. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Department of Veterans Affairs. No reprints available. Copyright © 2001 by W.B. Saunders Company 1046-199X/01/1203-0002$35.00/0 doi:10.1053/ajcd.2001.22775

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