Outer Gloves in Orthopaedic Procedures: A Polyester/Stainless Steel Wire Weave Glove Liner Compared with Latex

Steven S. Louis, Ely L. Steinberg, Orna A. Gruen, Craig S. Bartlett, David L. Helfet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To compare the efficacy of traditional double latex gloving with that of a highly cut-resistant polyester/stainless steel wire weave glove (PSSWWG) over a single latex inner glove for the prevention of perforation of the inner latex glove. Design: The primary surgeon and first assistant were involved in a prospective randomized study. Group I consisted of twenty-five procedures in which double latex gloves were used. Group II consisted of twenty-five procedures in which a PSSWWG liner was worn over an inner latex glove. All inner gloves were tested for perforations; all gloves exchanged that were presumed to have a perforation were noted and also tested. The type and length of the procedure were recorded. The dominant hand was recorded for all participants, along with their comments on the PSSWWG liner's performance. Setting: Orthopaedic Trauma Service, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York. Patients/Participants: Major operative cases, November 1996 to February 1997. Main Outcome Measurements: Inner latex glove perforations. Results: With the use of PSSWWG liners, the percentage of inner gloves found with a perforation dropped from 19 percent in the double latex group to 15 percent in the PSSWWG liner group (not statistically significant, p = 0.4). Two thirds of the perforations were in the primary surgeon's gloves, located in either the index finger or thumb. Nearly 80 percent of all perforations went unrecognized in both groups. Ninety-five percent of all perforations were in gloves that had been in use for more than 120 minutes (statistically significant, p = 0.01). Conclusions: The particular cut-resistant glove studied (Sceptor) did not significantly reduce the rate of inner glove perforations. Other studies with different cut-resistant glove types and protocols have proven the liners effective. We would still recommend using outer cloth or cut-resistant type gloves when bone fragments are being manipulated or when using sharp implants or saws. At a minimum, surgical gloves should be changed every two hours.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-105
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Trauma
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Cut resistance
  • Glove liners
  • Latex
  • Perforation
  • Surgical gloves


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