Nitrile and latex are both common materials for protective gloves for medical or industrial use. Nitrile is favored by many, primarily because so many people have latex allergies. Nitrile gloves are also more resistant to punctures, making this material suitable for many professions. However, when allergy is not a concern, latex has a slight advantage concerning comfort and dexterity.
Nitrile and latex gloves both come in various degrees of thickness, powdered or non-powdered, and sterile or non-sterile.
Nitrile gloves are made out of a synthetic rubber, whereas latex is natural material, made out of rubber.
According to firefighternation.com, nitrile gloves have more resistance to punctures (from needles, for instance) compared to latex gloves.
In a study, published by Jo Sawyer and Allan Bennett, on a specific brand of latex and nitrile gloves, latex was slightly better for “fine-finger” dexterity but both nitrile and latex scored equally for tasks requiring gross dexterity.
The biggest reason many medical and emergency professionals use nitrile over latex is because many people are allergic to latex. Another reason is that, unlike latex, nitrile gloves split when punctured, allowing the wearer quick awareness of potential biohazard or chemical contamination.