Protein content (medical products)

With regard to natural rubber latex products, proteins may elicit Type I, immediate type hypersensitivity, by causing IgE antibodies to be made (that attach to mast cells) and will recognize and react with them in subsequent exposures. Such proteins are referred to as natural rubber latex (NRL) allergenic proteins. Repeated exposure to the protein allergens through dermal, mucosal, pulmonary or invasive routes, asymptomatically increases the number of sensitized mast and basophil cells until a clinical threshold is reached. Once this critical threshold is attained, symptoms may include urticaria, rhinitis, dyspnea, abdominal cramps, headache, hypotension, tachycardia, and potential anaphylaxis. Allergenic protein can cause IgE antibodies to be formed (Type I). Medical products lower in protein content reduce the risk of developing a Type I hypersensitivity (e.g., gloves, catheters) as the probability of containing NRL allegenic proteins is reduced.