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Oncology Nurses, Pharmacists, and Oncologists Sought to Develop Standards for Chemotherapy Gloves

Chemotherapy gloves are manufactured for the safe handling of highly toxic cancer chemotherapeutic drugs. They are thicker, allowing more resistance to the permeation of chemo drugs than the conventional surgeons’ or patient-examination gloves. Typically, they are worn by oncologists, oncologic nurses, hospital pharmacists, pharmaceutical manufacturers, emergency care workers, and laboratory technicians.

Standards to evaluate the safety and performance of chemotherapy gloves were called for by members of the healthcare community and a large Chemotherapy Gloves Working Group was established in December 1999 at a meeting of ASTM Subcommittee D11.40 on Consumer Rubber Products. Fifteen volunteers representing manufacturers, users, government, academia, laboratories, consultants, and professional associations joined the group, and a meeting was held in June 2000 to further the standards development. Additional volunteers are sought to share their use of the gloves, particularly oncology nurses, pharmacists, and physicians (oncologists).

The working group is being led by Chiu Lin, Ph.D., chief, Infection Control Devices Branch, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Rockville, Md., who said plans are under way to develop a test method that will measure the gloves’ resistance to drug permeation. A specification for chemo gloves is under discussion.

To participate or comment, contact Dr. Chiu Lin, Chief, Infection Control Devices Branch, Division of Dental, Infection Control, and General Hospital Devices, Office of Device Evaluation, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, (HFZ-480), 9200 Corporate Blvd., Rockville, MD 20850 (301/ 443-8913; fax: 301/480-3002). Committee D11 meets Dec. 3-7 in Orlando, Fla. For meeting or membership details, contact Staff Manager Tim Brooke, ASTM (610/832-9729, fax: 610/832-9666. //

Copyright 2000, ASTM