Different Types Of Medical Gloves And Its Uses

Gloves are equipment specially designed for covering our hands. Gloves are used as safety measures while working with chemicals, oil, and heat  They protect hands from external infections, allergies, burns, and other damages. Generally, different materials are used to manufacture gloves. Rubber gloves testing act as a protective barrier between individuals and potential hazards, such as chemicals, biological substances.

Fabric gloves made of cotton or wool are used to protect hands from excess heat and cold. Likewise, There are gloves made of leather, metal, etc. They have specific uses. Gloves that don’t have separations for inserting fingers are called mittens. Few types don’t have separate covering for fingers; instead, there will be open holes. Such gloves are called fingerless gloves.

What Are Medical Gloves?

In hospitals, doctors and nurses use medical gloves to protect themselves from spreading illness while undergoing medical examinations or surgeries. In general,medical gloves give external protection from transmitted diseases.

Who Invented Medical Gloves?

The first chief surgeon of The Johns Hopkins Hospital, Dr. William Stewart Halsted, developed and introduced the first surgical glove in the United States.

Different Types Of Medical Gloves

Medical examination gloves are in different varieties.

  • Gloves used for medical examinations are called examination gloves or exam gloves. If you ask what is exam gloves are made from?The answer is,-they are made from a single material, but with different materials like latex,PVC,PE,Nitrile etc.
  • Surgical gloves are specially manufactured for surgeries.
  • There are gloves used in chemotherapy and other treatments where the patient is exposed to radiation.
  • Other healthcare gloves are rubber gloves, metal gloves, leather gloves etc.

Hospital authorities should adhere to specific standards from the FDA.

Chances of health hazards are common in industrial areas and hospitals. The authorities should make sure that all pieces of the safety equipment are in good condition. Storage equipment like gas cylinders, steam applicators and water storage containers should be attached with globe valve vs gate valve to control and regulate the flow.

As per the rules of the FDA, medical gloves must be leak-resistant and tear-resistant.

Healthcare equipment like examination gloves should be kept safely in the hospitals. As they are prone to damages, hospital authorities should provide storage arrangements. They can buy good lockers to keep healthcare tools from a leading smart lock supplier in the market.

Examination Gloves – Varieties And Uses

Examination gloves are available in various types based on the material used for its manufacturing.

Nitrile Examination Gloves – Nitrile is a polymer, and when it mixes with different substances, the chemical properties change, turning into a rubber-like substance. These gloves are standard in chemical units and hospitals where various medical examinations and lab activities are performed.

Nitrile examination gloves are safe to use as they will not cause allergic reactions to your skin. Nitrile has a specific chemical composition that avoids any harm to the surface, so it is widely in use for protection.

Nitrile gloves come as stretchable material. Nitrile is formed by activating heat with chemical substances. It is water resistant too. It is a perfect fit for your hands.

They are soft and supple and very durable. They resist scratches and tearing. All such properties make Nitrile gloves the best in the industry.

Latex Gloves – Latex is a substance derived from rubber trees. Gloves made out of latex  are commonly called latex gloves. They are widely used for healthcare, domestic and industrial purposes. Sometimes the interior of the latex gloves is coated with cornstarch to make it easy to put on and remove.

As latex gloves provide high-level protection against external infections, they are widely used in veterinary and dental hospitals. It is disposable and sterile too.

Latex gloves are compatible with the top level of dexterity, sensitivity, and flexibility. Apart from all these, latex gloves are resistant to tear and scratch.

Vinyl Gloves – Poly Vinyl Gloves are disposable, and their production cost is meagre compared to others. These gloves are made out of PVC and mixed with a plasticizer, making them more flexible.

As vinyl gloves are free from chemical accelerators, they are the best substitute for latex gloves and are suitable for people with type 1 allergies.

PE Gloves – Polyethylene gloves are commonly available in the market. Polyethylene is a type of plastic used to make food bags and foils. Low-density polyethylene is used to manufacture gloves as it is more flexible and easy to wear. PE gloves are used in light medical examinations, food servicing, etc. They are loose-fit gloves which makes them very easy to remove and discard, are nitrile gloves food safe, too? Although nitrile butadiene rubber might sound like a concerning name, it’s actually a completely food-safe material. The point is, food should be handled in a very safe and sanitary way.

How To Select Examination Gloves?

When you buy medical examination gloves, you should consider a few factors like,

  • Size
  • Strength
  • Material
  • Purpose
  • Durability
  • Elasticity and Sturdiness

The FDA Guidelines For Using Examination Gloves

The FDA published a rule on banning powdered gloves on December 19, 2016.Due to this powder coating, issues like inflammation, allergies, changes in the body’s immune response, etc., were found in many people.

Here are some rules set by the FDA regarding the usage of gloves

  • Before putting on sterile gloves, it is mandatory to wash your hands.
  • When you use gloves for examination purposes, ensure that they fit to your hands properly and comfortably.
  • When using latex gloves, always check if there are any allergic reactions.
  • Sharp surfaces or objects will damage the gloves. In such cases, it must be removed to do further examinations.
  • Always wash hands with warm soapy water or mild rubbing alcohol after removing the gloves.
  • You shouldn’t share or reuse the gloves.


Any medical gloves that come into contact with infectious materials are considered clinical waste and must be thrown away. Latex gloves are eco-friendly as they are available from natural sources. Whatever it is, if you buy the gloves, online or from any physical store, you need to consider the above mentioned points. You need to check its quality, purpose, and durability. And it is important to follow the rules and regulations before and after the usage of medical gloves.