Abrasion resistance of medical glove materials

Authors

  • Donna L. Walsh,

    Corresponding author
    1. Office of Science and Technology (HFZ-150), Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 9200 Corporate Boulevard, Rockville, Maryland 20852
    • Food and Drug Administration, CDRH/OST/DMMS, 9200 Corporate Blvd. (HFZ-150), Rockville, MD 20850
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  • Matthew R. Schwerin,

    1. Office of Science and Technology (HFZ-150), Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 9200 Corporate Boulevard, Rockville, Maryland 20852
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  • Richard W. Kisielewski,

    1. Office of Science and Technology (HFZ-150), Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 9200 Corporate Boulevard, Rockville, Maryland 20852
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  • Richard M. Kotz,

    1. Office of Surveillance and Biometrics (HFZ-542), Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 9200 Corporate Boulevard, Rockville, Maryland 20852
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  • Maria P. Chaput,

    1. Winchester Engineering and Analytical Center, Office of Regulatory Affairs, Food and Drug Administration, 109 Holton Street, Winchester, Massachusetts 01890
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  • George W. Varney,

    1. Winchester Engineering and Analytical Center, Office of Regulatory Affairs, Food and Drug Administration, 109 Holton Street, Winchester, Massachusetts 01890
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  • Theresa M. To

    1. Winchester Engineering and Analytical Center, Office of Regulatory Affairs, Food and Drug Administration, 109 Holton Street, Winchester, Massachusetts 01890
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  • The opinions regarding specific products identified by brand name or manufacturer herein are the views of the authors and are not to be implied as either an official endorsement or criticism by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the Department of Health and Human Services. Likewise, the contents of this article are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Abstract

Due to the increasing demand for nonlatex medical gloves in the health-care community, there is a need to assess the durability of alternative glove materials. This study examines durability characteristics of various glove materials by abrasion resistance testing. Natural rubber latex (latex), polyvinyl chloride (vinyl), acrylonitrile butadiene (nitrile), polychloroprene (neoprene), and a styrene-ethylene/butylene-styrene block copolymer (SEBS) were tested. All test specimens, with the exception of the vinyl, were obtained from surgical gloves. Unaged out-of-the-box specimens as well as those subjected to various degrees of artificial aging were included in the study. After the abrasion sequence, the barrier integrity of the material was assessed through the use of a static leak test. Other traditional tests performed on these materials were viral penetration to validate the abrasion data and tear testing for comparative purposes. The results indicate that specific glove-material performance is dependent upon the particular test under consideration. Most notably, abrasion, even in controlled nonsevere conditions, may compromise to varying degrees the barrier integrity of latex, vinyl, SEBS, nitrile, and neoprene glove materials. However, as evidenced by the results of testing three brands of neoprene gloves, the abrasion resistance of any one glove material may be significantly affected by variations in production processes. © 2003 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part B: Appl Biomater 68B: 81–87, 2004

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