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Vet Dermatol. 2006 Jun;17(3):163-8.

Masked, controlled study to investigate the efficacy of a Staphylococcus intermedius autogenous bacterin for the control of canine idiopathic recurrent superficial pyoderma.

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Dermatology Referral Service, Rooftops, Spring View Road, Ware, Herts, UK.


A masked, controlled study was designed to investigate the clinical efficacy of a staphylococcal autogenous bacterin for the control of canine idiopathic recurrent pyoderma (IRP). Ten dogs with at least three prior episodes of recurrent superficial pyoderma were recruited. All were screened and found to be free of ectoparasitic and fungal disease and failed to respond favourably to a dietary trial. Those exhibiting signs of pruritus responded completely to antibacterial therapy. Haematological and biochemical parameters were generally unremarkable and all dogs were euthyroid. Staphylococcus intermedius cultures from lesions were used to produce an autogenous bacterin for each animal. A numerical 'lesion score' was allocated and dogs were randomly divided into two groups of five (groups 1 and 2). Both groups received a 4-week course of antibiotic; group 1 also received concurrent s/c injections of bacterin, which continued until week 10. Group 2 received no additional therapy. All dogs were re-examined and rescored at weeks 5 and 10 and repeat blood samples were submitted at week 10 to screen for adverse effects. Comparison of scores at week 0 and week 5 (Mann-Whitney U-test) revealed no significant differences between the groups. At week 10, group 2 (control group) individual lesion scores were significantly higher compared with the group receiving bacterin (P < 0.05) and there was a significantly greater increase in the sum of the individual lesion scores for group 2 compared with group 1, from week 5 to week 10 (P < 0.05). No adverse reactions to bacterin therapy were detected. These results suggest that autogenous bacterins may provide an alternative, safe, effective method for the control of canine IRP. Further studies using larger groups of dogs and for a longer follow-up period are now warranted.

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