Surgical gloves are much like doctors’ examination gloves, except they are of higher quality and are more expensive. They provide comfort and tactile sensitivity while providing barrier protection to surgeons and nurses during operating procedures. Choosing the right surgical glove can be an ordeal looking at the plethora of options available.
In 1894, William Stewart Halsted pioneered the widespread use of rubber gloves during surgery. Halsted was the first surgeon-in-chief and first professor of surgery at the Johns Hopkins Hospital within the university of the same name in Baltimore. He is often called the father of American surgery and the father of surgical rubber gloves. The first known use of them was by a German physician carrying out a gynecological operation in 1758. At this time, surgeons routinely operated in their everyday clothes with no more than an already bloodstained apron over the top.
In the 1840s, anatomists and pathologists began using rubber ones when they were conducting dissections. By January 2008, Johns Hopkins Hospital had phased out the use of latex surgical ones. As reported at the 2010 Annual Meeting of the Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in New Orleans, some surgeons believe that latex-free surgical products may be more likely to perforate during operations.
The latex glove, made from natural rubber latex, is a long-standing, popular choice.It provides excellent tactile sensitivity, allowing the surgeon to feel his way through the procedure. Latex also makes for a comfortable product. They are also highly elastic, making them easy to put on. Today, there are many options available due to improved technology. For instance, surgical products with polymer inner coating are available to provide ease of donning ones even if hands are damp or dry.
Polyisoprene (C5H8, CAS No. is 9003-31-0)surgical ones are made from synthetic polyisoprene which provide similar properties to latex (natural rubber). Of all material used to make surgical gloves, polyisoprene() is the most expensive material. In fact, polyisoprene has a molecular structure that is very similar to natural rubber. Polyisoprene is regarded as a “latex” product without the harmful protein found in latex which is responsible for latex allergies. Like other surgical materials, this product are available with polymer inner coating so donning gloves are easier even when hands are damp or dry.
Neoprene is also a synthetic material. It is often the choice for surgical gloves when latex is not an option. However, while it is a suitable substitute for latex in many respects, it is not as elastic. Like latex and polyisoprene ones, neoprene types are available with a polymer coating on the inside to make donning the gloves easier.