Occupational Asthma Reference

Vandenplas O, Larbanois A, Vanassche F, Fran├žois S, Jamart J, Vandeweerdt M, Thimpont J, Latex-induced occupational asthma: time trend in incidence and relationship with hospital glove policies, Allergy, 2009;64:415-420,
(Plain text: Vandenplas O, Larbanois A, Vanassche F, Francois S, Jamart J, Vandeweerdt M, Thimpont J, Latex-induced occupational asthma: time trend in incidence and relationship with hospital glove policies, Allergy)

Keywords: Belgium,latex,control,healthcare,incidence,prevention

Known Authors

Olivier Vandenplas, Universite Mont-Goginne, Yvoir Olivier Vandenplas

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Abstract

ABSTRACT
Background: Natural rubber latex (NRL) has become as a major cause of occupational asthma (OA) in workers using NRL gloves. Few population-based studies have assessed the impact of changes in the patterns of glove usage on the incidence of NRL-induced OA.

Objective: To characterize the time trends in incident cases of NRL-induced OA in Belgium and examine whether incidence rates were related to the types of gloves used in hospitals.

Methods: Incident cases of NRL-induced OA were identified through a retrospective review of all claims submitted to the Workers' Compensation Board up to December 2004. Based on the results of diagnostic procedures, the diagnosis of NRL-induced OA was categorized as definite, probable, unlikely, or indeterminate. The patterns of glove usage were characterized through a questionnaire survey of Belgian hospitals.

Results: A total of 298 claims for NRL-induced OA were identified, including 127 subjects with definite OA and 68 with probable OA. Categorized by the year of asthma onset, the incident cases of definite and probable NRL-induced OA markedly decreased from 1999 onwards. The use of powdered NRL gloves fell from 80.9% in 1989 to 17.9% in 2004. Powdered NRL gloves were predominantly substituted with NRL-free gloves, especially in the case of non-sterile procedures.

Conclusion: These national compensation-based data confirm that a persistent decline in the incidence of NRL-induced OA has occurred since late 1990s. This downward trend has temporally been associated with a decreasing usage of powdered NRL, further supporting a beneficial role of changes in glove policies.

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