September 30, 2020

Survey: 31% of surgeons, OR nurses experience allergic skin reactions

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor's Note

A new global survey by SERMO for Mölnlycke of 550 surgeons and OR nurses finds that 31% have experienced a skin reaction on their hands, with 21% having to change sterile gloves during a surgical procedure because of an irritating or distracting reaction. Reactions include dry and itchy skin, rashes, and blisters.

The survey also found:


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  • 32% of surgeons experience an allergic reaction in the OR at least once a year
  • 46% of respondents experienced a reaction in the past 6 months, and 60% experienced a reaction in the past year
  • 71% report that they or a colleague had been distracted from their work because of a skin reaction to their surgical gloves
  • 87% of those who had a reaction were diagnosed with contact or allergic dermatitis.

Allergic skin reactions appear to be a widespread and common issue for many surgeons and nurses, the researchers conclude.

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