Medical Equipment Blog

Exam Gloves Q & A

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

For patient examinations in home health care or medical settings, what is the best option for low cost yet durable exam gloves?

In the big picture of medical supply costs exam gloves for hospital rooms, clinical settings, doctor's offices and home health care providers are typically very low cost regardless of the specific type that you select. For most examination gloves, the newer types such as nitrile and neoprene are the most expensive. Latex gloves, which were once considered the highest priced, typically cost slightly less than the nitrile and neoprene options. Keep in mind that most medical facilities will keep at least one alternative to latex in supply for staff and patients with latex reactions. For some professionals and health care facilities, the slightly higher cost of the non-latex gloves is balanced by the lower incidence of allergic reactions.

Vinyl examination gloves are the lowest cost, but these gloves have limitations over the options listed above. For general use and patient care when sterile gloves are not required, they can be a very good low cost option.

Why are some examination gloves powdered and some gloves powder-free?

Powdered or powder free exam gloves are really a personal choice unless you have allergic reactions. In general the powder, which is often an industrial corn starch, is ideal in keeping the gloves from sticking to each other as well as helping with grip by providing a slightly tacky surface. The powder is also great for adding ease to glove application and removal, since the skin slides smoothly into the glove itself. Non-powdered gloves, or powder free gloves, are recommended for allergies to the powder, which can trigger eye watering, asthma and respiratory problems. Some types of gloves now use other treatments to aid in applying and removing, including chlorine or aloe.

What options are there for avoiding dry skin when using examination gloves on a regular basis?

Wearing examination gloves whenever working with patients is one of the best ways to avoid dry skin problems. This is because gloves minimize the requirement of multiple hand washes per hour or per day, allowing the skin's natural oils to remain in place. If you don't use gloves on a regular basis you are much more likely to encounter dry skin problems. Other gloves that have natural ingredients such as aloe vera are also available that help moisture the skin while the exam gloves are in use.

Are there examination gloves in different sizes for those with very large or small hands?

Different brands and types of examination gloves offer different sizing options. Most companies offer sizes small through large, while other companies offer extra large as well. For people with very small hands, sticking to a latex, vinyl or nitrile glove in a small is often a good choice, since the natural tight fit of these gloves will keep them close to the surface of the hand. Examination gloves come in many types. Some are powdered, while others are powder free. They are also constructed from a variety of materials. Taking some time to find the best type for your facility will be worth your while.

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home