UK-based multicentre cross-sectional study assessing advice requests veterinary dermatologists received from general practitioners

Peri Lau-Gillard, Charlie Walker, Victoria Robinson, Susan Paterson, Anita Patel, Janet Littlewood, Jon Hardy, Filippo Debellis, Natalie Barnard, Ariane Neuber-Watts, Anke Hendricks, Katarina Varjonen, Peter B Hill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

BACKGROUND: There is little currently little information available regarding the nature of the advice requests veterinary dermatologists receive from general practitioners. Collation of such data could direct continuing veterinary development in the future.

METHODS: Dermatologists completed hand-written recording sheets during or after enquiries. Information recorded included the route of enquiry, nature of advice, material provided, practice type and location, animal signalment, presenting signs, diagnosis/differential diagnosis, treatment and referral recommendations, time taken and if charges were made.

RESULTS: Twelve dermatology services recorded 768 advice requests over a 6-month period. Most requests were submitted via email and related to canine dermatology (81%). An average of 9.5 minutes was spent replying to requests. Charges were made in 2% of cases. Advice regarding otitis was most commonly sought, followed by pruritus, alopecia and crusting. The most frequently discussed diagnoses included allergy, otitis, pyoderma, demodicosis, dermatophytosis and neoplasia. Antibiotics, anti-pruritics and topical otic medications were the most commonly discussed therapeutics.

LIMITATIONS: This is an initial study and therefore there are limitations involving the depth of the data. Additional studies should be completed which identify why advice is sought, decision-making regarding referral, and if advice should be charged similarly to other disciplines.

CONCLUSIONS: These findings highlight that veterinarians mostly frequently seek advice on management of common dermatological problems, including allergy, otitis and pyoderma.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2784
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalThe Veterinary record
Issue number9
Early online date11 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2023


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