Dermatology Nurse Advisor Service

Skin and ear diseases are common conditions seen in veterinary practice and can significantly affect the quality of life of both pets and their owners. Pets can feel miserable due to the relentless itch and owners feel helpless and frustrated trying to find solutions that work.

Skin disease ranges from mild to severe depending on the cause. Finding the appropriate management plan requires a thorough work up to identify the needs of each individual patient and time spent with the owner so that the problem can be thoroughly understood. Our nurse, Sara, recognised that our skin/ ear patients, and their owners, needed extra time and focused her knowledge and training in the area of dermatology.

The typical process for a patient with skin/ ear problems:

  • Consultation with Duncan, the vet surgeon, for initial assessment and identification of skin problem.
  • Patient is then referred to Sara for skin sampling and owner guidance of the diagnostic and treatment process.
  • Appropriate regular check-ups conducted by Sara, with Duncan’s input, where necessary.

Benefits of dermatology service

Treatment is informed with a thorough work up, which is essential to accurately diagnose and manage identified symptoms and support for the owner is improved and easily accessible. The consultation with Sara can last up to an hour as skin problems are complex and treatment cannot be rushed.

This allows for us to discuss with you properly about your pet’s skin condition, make sure you understand what the problem may be and what we can do to put it right. It also gives us time to perform a skin workup; something there isn’t time to do properly in a normal consultation.

Skin problems can seem to go, but often come back in what we call flare ups. By doing a workup instead of treating the symptoms each time, you increase the chance of finding out what is causing the problem. We will take the necessary tests to rule out different causes; these include examining skin cells with a microscope at the surgery and possibly sending a blood test to an external lab.

With informed and logical management, patient comfort and quality of life is improved.

Possible causes of skin problems

  • Flea’s and other parasites
  • Allergies – There is a vast variety of allergens such ranging from food to dust mites to pollens
  • Skin infections – Yeast and bacteria live on healthy skin without causing problems but can become pathogenic when skin is damaged
  • Hormonal problems – older patients that develop skin problems may be suffering from particular hormonal imbalances.

Want to know more about our practice?

Call our team on 01752 779999 for a chat.