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Thread: Canine ear margin dermatosis

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010

    Canine ear margin dermatosis

    Has anyone ever heard of Canine ear margin dermatosis?

    Our Vet said that is what our 2 year pup has and we have never heard of it? It doesn't really bother him and the only indication is little black scale build-up. The Vet said there is nothing that can be done and then proceded to offer several experimental products equalling $300? If nothing can be done why charge so much? Is there someone that can help with this?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Re: Canine ear margin dermatosis

    Here are a couple of links:

    and this:

    Ear margin dermatosis is an accumulation of small greasy plugsand scale-like material that sticks to the skin and hairs of theedge of the ear flap. This material is due to excessivesecretion by certain skin glands. The condition is most common in Dachshunds and in this breed is frequently accompanied by hair loss from the ears. Other breeds of dogs are occasionally affected.

    Ear margin dermatosis may result from blood clots in the blood vessels supplying the ear, but often the cause is unknown. In severe cases, the ear margin may become infected, and skin ulcers may develop.

    Treatment consists of removing the accumulated material and treating the under-lying inflammation.
    And from the Merck Veterinary Manual
    Several ear margin dermatoses characterized by alopecia have been described in dogs. Periodic pinnal alopecia in Miniature Poodles is characterized by progressive bilateral alopecia of the convex surfaces of the ear. The hair loss is acute in onset and progresses over several months, but hair may spontaneously regrow. There are no other clinical signs. Treatment is unnecessary.
    Pinnal alopecia has been reported in Dachshunds, Chihuahuas, Italian Greyhounds, and Whippets and is thought to have a hereditary predisposition. The age of onset is ≤1 yr of age. Lesions start as thinning of the hair coat, and complete pinnal alopecia may occur by 8-9 yr of age. Other commonly affected areas are the ventral neck and thorax and the caudal medial thighs. The hair loss is asymptomatic. Differential diagnoses for this condition are endocrinopathies (eg, hypothyroidism, hyperadrenocorticism, sex hormone imbalance). Histologically, the skin is normal and hair follicles are diminished in size but normal in appearance. No effective treatment has been reported, but pentoxifylline (10 mg/kg, bid-tid ), melatonin (3 mg for small breeds and 6 mg for large breeds, bid-tid ), and topical minoxidil have anecdotally been described as helpful.
    Ear margin seborrhea or ear margin dermatosis is common in Dachshunds, although other breeds with pendulous pinnae may be affected. Lesions usually affect the apex of the pinnae on both sides but can progress to involve the whole ear margin. The cause is unknown. Lesions appear as waxy gray to yellow scale adherent to the base of hair shafts. Plugs of hair can be easily epilated leaving behind a shiny surface to the skin. In severe cases the ear margins are edematous, and fissured. Histologic findings include severe hyperkeratosis and follicular keratosis with dilated follicles filled with keratin debris. Differential diagnoses include sarcoptic mange, pinnal alopecia, proliferative thrombovascular necrosis, dermatophytosis, and frostbite. Dermatophytosis in particular can cause a scaling pinnal dermatitis in dogs, cats, and horses but the ear margin is not typically involved and other areas of the body are generally affected as well. Treatment includes antiseborrheic shampoos (eg, sulfur, salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide), keratolytic products, dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate (DSS), and systemic medications that may help normalize the abnormal keratinization process (vitamin A and synthetic retinoids; essential fatty acids). Topical or oral glucocorticoids and pentoxifylline (10 mg/kg, bid-tid ) may be beneficial when severe inflammation and fissures develop.
    Several immune-mediated diseases such as pemphigus foliaceus, pemphigus erythematosus, drug eruption, toxic epidermal necrolysis, and immune vasculitis may affect the pinna and the ear canal. ( See also autoimmune skin disorders , Autoimmune Skin Disorders.) Other areas of the body are typically affected and may include footpads, mucous membranes, mucocutaneous junctions, nails and nail beds, and the tip of the tail. Immune-mediated diseases are confirmed with biopsy of primary lesions (papules, vesicles, pustules, erythematous margins of secondary lesions) with histologic evaluation by a dermatopathologist.
    Experimental and new drugs are often expensive. The issue with the disease is that it is often idiopathic (no source reason can be determined) and can only be treated symptomatically.

  4. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011

    Re: Canine ear margin dermatosis

    My Boston terrier has this really bad on the inside and the endge of his ears. I use Vitamin E oil and rub it on his ears every night and it seems to help quite a bit. I also pour Fish oil in his food every night.
    I always thought it was just dry skin until I started to look into it today and now I'm getting nervous that this may be a side effect of something bigger.
    :-( not sure what to do now. I guess talk to my Vet.

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