Judith Shuck

Judith Shuck

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FDA Bans Powdered Gloves

On December 16, 2016, the FDA displayed the final rule to ban powdered surgeon's gloves, powdered patient examination gloves, and absorbable powder for lubricating a surgeon's glove because these products present unreasonable and substantial risk to health care providers, patients and other individuals.

While medical gloves play a significant role in protecting patients, health care providers and other individuals in close proximity, powdered gloves are very dangerous for a variety of reasons. These devices are associated with an extensive list of potentially serious adverse events, including severe airway inflammation, hypersensitivity reactions, allergic reactions (including asthma), lung inflammation and damage or post-surgical bands of fibrous scar tissue that form between internal organs and tissues (adhesions). These adverse events have been attributed to the use of glove powder with all types of gloves. In addition, aerosolized glove powder can carry proteins that may cause respiratory allergic reactions.

The state of the art of both surgeon's and patient examination gloves includes non-powdered alternatives that provide similar protection, dexterity, and performance that powdered gloves do, but do not carry any of the risks associated with glove powder. Thus, a transition to alternatives in the marketplace should not result in any detriment to public health.
The act of banning a device is an important decision, and the FDA only takes this action on rare occasions when necessary to protect the health of the public. The FDA has only banned one other medical device, prosthetic hair fibers in June 1983.

For more information on Medical Device Bans, please visit the FDA’s Medical Device Ban webpage.

Published by the Food and Drug Administration, Center for Devices and Radiological Health

Reference: Download a copy of the 21 CFR Parts 878, 880, and 895: Banned Devices; Powdered Surgeon’s Gloves, Powdered Patient Examination Gloves, and Absorbable Powder for Lubricating a Surgeon’s Glove by clicking on the document title shown next to "Download Attachments", shown below.

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Studying 1Some of the training listed in the HRMMST Training Matirx requires the completion of on-line courses. Download the list of on-line training courses using the link shown at the end of this article. 

As a HRMMST Member you are encouraged to contact the HRMMRS Program Office at (757) 963-0632 if you have questions regarding your individual training requirements.

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Our office is co-located with the Tidewater Emergency Medical Services Council (TEMS) at 1104 Madison Plaza, Chesapeake, Virginia 23320.


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The HRMMRS began as a DHS Grant Program in 1999. The HRMMRS continues to support & enhance Hampton Roads public safety, hospital, public health, & emergency management response capabilities to manage mass casualty incidents.


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