FDA includes vets in powdered glove ban

The ban went into effect January 18, 2017

The Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) wants veterinary practitioners to know that a December ruling banning the use of powdered gloves in human medicine also applies to veterinary medicine.

The sole exception is powdered radiographic protection gloves.

The ban went into effect on Jan. 18, 2017, meaning that any powdered surgical gloves, powdered patient exam gloves and absorbable powder for lubricating surgical gloves already sold and in possession of veterinary clinics and animal surgical centers fall under the ban and should be disposed of.

According to the FDA, the reasoning behind the ban is that powdered gloves “present an unreasonable and substantial risk of illness or injury that cannot be corrected or eliminated by a change in labeling.”

When pressed on what constitutes “an unreasonable and substantial risk,” an FDA spokeswomen forwarded a portion of the ruling in response: “the risks of powdered gloves include severe airway inflammation, hypersensitivity reactions, allergic reactions (including asthma), allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis, dyspnea, as well as granuloma and adhesion formation when exposed to internal tissue.”

While the previously listed health risks have human patients in mind, the CVM concurs that similar risks would be present among veterinary patients.

The risks of powdered glove use outweigh any benefits, which are minimal, noted the FDA, involving mostly comfortability issues for wearers.

Because non-powdered surgical and exam gloves are readily available, the FDA doesn’t believe the ban poses an undue hardship for veterinarians.


Originally published in the March 2017 issue of Veterinary Practice News. Did you enjoy this article? Then subscribe today! 

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