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All About NRL Surgical Gloves 

All About NRL Surgical Gloves 

Introduction to surgical gloves 

Since about 1980s, gloves are a fundamental part of most medical treatments, especially the surgeries. They are used for protection against any spread of germs or bacteria. Surgical gloves are also known as medical gloves for their extensive use in the medical industry for a wide range of procedures. They not only prevent the transmission of bacteria from the patients to the surgeons, and vice versa, but also save the skin from exposure to different chemicals and hazardous agents. The gloves used are mostly disposable since they are the best means of prevention of transmission.

While there are a number of gloves types available today, the most commonly used are natural rubber latex (NRL) gloves. These gloves have been in use in the medical industry for decades. Despite the popular usage, there are certain allergy risks attached to the NRL gloves. However, with a little care when dealing with susceptible people, these risks can be minimised easily.

Different materials for surgical gloves 

The NRL gloves were first used back in 1980 and since then, they have been a compulsory part in a surgical treatment. Due to their effectiveness against blood-borne infectious diseases, they are considered mandatory, especially for invasive surgeries. However, there are other options of gloves available in the market. Take a look at their benefits as well.


Neuprene gloves are also a good choice for medical gloves. They are made from synthetic material, unlike latex gloves. Neoprene gloves offer high material strength than latex gloves, but they are less comfortable than the latex gloves. They are also more expensive which explains why few clinics or hospitals use these gloves.


Polyisoprene is also synthetic gloves. They overcome the shortcomings of Neuprene as along with being high-strength gloves, they are as comfortable as latex and also, they are elastic enough for comfortable use. Nevertheless, these supreme qualities come at a high cost. These gloves are more expensive than even Neuprene gloves.


The synthetically manufactured Nitrile gloves are an excellent choice if the comfort is neglected. These gloves offer remarkable protection against chemicals and other hazardous drugs. They aren’t as elastic as Polyisoprene or Latex gloves, but this can be catered to through mixing nitrile with the latex.

The natural rubber latex gloves 

Of the different gloves mentioned in the previous section, Natural Rubber Latex, NRL, remain the most popular choice. This is because, these gloves offer the ideal tradeoff between strength, comfort and durability. The latex allows the gloves to be used by all users with different hand sizes as the gloves fit perfectly on the hands, taking the shape of the hand.

The reason for the high qualities of the NRL gloves is the main material, latex. Latex is generally used for the natural rubber latex that is extracted from the Hevea brasiliensis tree in the South East Asia. The material has a wide range of applications due to the exceptional qualities like the high elasticity. Latex is mainly made from rubber polymer. However, they are other elements as well such as protein molecules and water composition. Sugar and fatty acids are also present.

To turn NRL into Latex gloves, the material has to undergo a complex manufacturing process. These processes include the addition of a number of chemicals that give it the required strength and durability. The addition of proteins give the gloves the high elastic nature along with high resistance against tensile strength. These 2 qualities are the prime reason behind the extensive usage of these gloves in the medical industry.

Some guidelines on using surgical gloves 

If you’re someone who performs surgeries or uses ansell surgical gloves for any other medical purpose, there are some useful tips that can be helpful for you.

  1. Only wear the surgical gloves when there is a risk of infection or transmission of germs.
  2. Gloves should only be worn when there is a direct contact with the wound or the area to be treated.
  3. Do not just throw away the gloves. Ensure that the gloves are properly washed before thrown.
  4. Change gloves after every treatment.
  5. Consider the possibilities of any allergy from specific type of glove.
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