All the precautions were in place or were supposed to be anyway. Surgeons scheduled your surgery as the first one in the early morning. The sanitized operating room was stripped of any items that might cause an issue. And you wore identification that clearly noted your medical issue. Still, something terribly wrong occurred pre-surgery.
Complications arose, and you almost died because a health care staff member failed to follow the specific guidelines necessary for your surgery to succeed. This health care crew member mistakenly wore latex gloves. You, like some other U.S hospital patients, are allergic to latex. The result: The surgery was rescheduled because you nearly died, and you required life-saving measures. This represented an avoidable situation, but you were one of the lucky ones to survive.
The symptoms vary
Whether in a hospital or a clinic, such incidents – some of which prove fatal – are attributed to many available medical supplies. Latex gloves, face masks, catheters and stethoscopes are among the medical items that contain latex.
And the root of this serious problem comes from the proteins found in natural latex rubber. This can abruptly happen via contact with a medical item that contains latex or even when a person inhales latex particles found on them.
It is important to recognize the symptoms of a latex allergy. Here are some of them:
- Skin that itches, potentially causing redness and swelling
- The sudden and rapid development of rashes on your body
- Watery and itchy eyes
- Coughing and incessant sneezing
- Difficulty breathing
Your body also can experience anaphylactic shock in which blood pressure drops and airways narrow, preventing you from breathing. This ultimately can lead to heart failure.
As someone who has a latex allergy, ensure that anytime you deal with medical professionals to make them aware of your condition. As an increasing number of people are diagnosed with latex allergies, more and more medical facilities understand the extra steps they must take to ensure safety.