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Malassezia spp on the periocular skin of dogs and their association with blepharitis, ocular discharge, and the application of ophthalmic medications

  • Author(s): Newbold, GM
  • Outerbridge, CA
  • Kass, PH
  • Maggs, DJ
  • et al.
Abstract

Objective-To determine how frequently Malassezia spp were identified on the periocular skin of dogs and assess the respective associations between the presence of Malassezia spp on the periocular skin and blepharitis, ocular discharge, and the application of ophthalmic medications. Design-Prospective clinical study. Animals-167 eyelids of 84 dogs. Procedures-Samples obtained from the surface of the eyelid skin by use of adhesive tape were evaluated cytologically for the presence of Malassezia spp. Dogs were grouped on the basis of the presence of blepharitis, nature of ocular discharge, and whether ophthalmic medications were applied, and the proportion of samples with Malassezia spp was compared among the groups. Results-Malassezia spp were detected in 19 samples, of which 15 were obtained from eyes without blepharitis and 14 were obtained from eyes treated with topical ophthalmic medications. The proportion of samples with Malassezia spp was significantly higher for eyes with ocular discharge than for eyes without ocular discharge, especially if that discharge was mucoid or mucopurulent, and for eyes that were treated with aqueous-based medications only or a combination of oil- and aqueous-based medications than for eyes that were not treated. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance-Malassezia organisms were detected on the periocular skin of 3 of 56 (5%) clinically normal dogs. Malassezia organisms were also frequently found on the periocular skin of dogs that had mucoid or mucopurulent ocular discharge or that were administered topical aqueous-based ophthalmic medications, and the periocular skin of these dogs should be cytologically evaluated for Malassezia organisms.

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