Deborah's Story

I had breast reduction surgery and every time I went to see the surgeon for follow-up care, he would be wearing latex gloves when he examined me.  He would check the suture sites, redo my bandages after applying an ointment at the suture sites.  By the time I got home, the entire suture sites were irritated and inflamed.  This went on for about two weeks.  The sutures in my right breast literally fell apart from the inflammation.  My husband was the one to finally figure out was was going on.  The surgeon thought I might be allergic to the ointment the doctor was applying but no, my husband said "I think you have a latex allergy."  And he was right!  I told the doctor to wear non-latex gloves, which he did the next time I saw him.  The suture areas never became inflamed again and the areas calmed down and eventually healed, but I was left with some very irregular scarring and discoloration on both breasts, all because the allergy wasn't caught in time.  I had to have an extra surgery to modify the scarring that occurred as a result of my allergic reaction to my surgeon's latex gloves.  I really believe that my surgeon should have been the one to diagnose my allergy to latex.  He should have caught this, not my husband who knows nothing about medicine.  This just goes to show you that even doctors don't always think about latex allergies, even when the symptoms are staring them right in the face.

Deborah S