Casein allergy and latex allergy
I take care of a 3 year-old girl with a contact allergy to milk. She has had several systemic reactions after cutaneous exposure to milk, and I have reproduced this in our office after touching her back with milk. She had flushing, urticaria, wheezing and cough. With strict avoidance, she has not had any further reactions.
Her parents asked me if she needs to avoid latex, as there is casein in latex. I have researched this, and have found that there is casein in latex. But, I could only find one report of a reaction - to boxing gloves in a milk allergic patient. I am wondering if there is any research available on this topic, or recommendations about avoidance? Should she avoid all contact with latex? Even latex in clothing?
There is no risk of latex in clothing or other personal items in an individual with milk contact allergy. Milk protein has been used in the powder of latex gloves and in the padding of boxing gloves. This contamination of latex items with milk protein is unusual and unlikely to be of significance in clothing containing latex. It could be an issue with powdered latex gloves, so I would encourage your patient to avoid. Otherwise I do not think there are any concerns with contact with latex items. Casein or milk protein are not inherent components of latex.
1. Ylitalo, Leea, et al. "Cow’s milk casein, a hidden allergen in natural rubber latex gloves." Journal of allergy and clinical immunology 104.1 (1999): 177-180.
2. PERKIN, JUDYE. "The latex and food allergy connection." Journal of the American Dietetic Association 100.11 (2000): 1381-1384.
I hope this information is of some help to you and your practice.
All my best.