Topical therapy in canine atopic dermatitis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Topical therapy has an important role in managing canine atopic dermatitis (AD). Topical therapies can moisturise and soothe the skin, treat and prevent secondary bacterial and yeast infections, and remove adherent scale, grease, allergens and debris. They can be used as sole therapy or combined with other therapeutic strategies. Most topical treatments are safe with minimal cutaneous or systemic toxicity or other effects. Their use can therefore offset the need for systemic treatments that are expensive and/or have greater potential for adverse effects.
Shampoos are the most common topical treatment modality. However, while most dogs accept bathing this can be time consuming and requires adequate facilities. This can be off-putting to owners, which can limit the frequency and effectiveness of treatment. Non-rinsing wipes, foams and spot-on preparations have therefore been developed to facilitate topical application and improve compliance.
This review will look at the topical therapy options for canine AD. It will the focus on the general principles of topical therapy using some specific agents to illustrate the scientific evidence for safety and efficacy. It is beyond the scope of this article to discuss topical pharmacological preparations, which are reviewed elsewhere (Olivry et al., 2010, Mueller et al., 2012, Olivry et al., 2015).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-82
JournalUK-VET Companion animal
Early online date16 Mar 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 16 Mar 2020


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