Information on different departments at SNU VMTH and introduction for the medical staff will be provided here.
In order to provide proper medical treatment for the ever-increasing skin-related ailments of companion animals, SNU VMTH has
assigned professors of dermatology and is operating the dermatology department as an independent department. SNU VMTH is
the only veterinary hospital to have a dedicated dermatology department.
The SNU VMTH dermatology department mainly provides the following medical services.
- We carry out PCR test for the timely diagnosis of bacterial skin infections and dermatophytosis. Antibiotic treatment will be based on the identification of bacterial skin infection and an antibiotic susceptibility test.
- The dermoscopic test is a test that aids the treatment of skin diseases, especially those associated with hair growth and pore conditions by the use of dermoscopic image, on which we can visually confirm the healthiness and status of the skin based on hair growth, skin formation degree, and pore conditions.
- TEWL test
The normal moisture level of the skin and the natural defense mechanism of the skin are known to be directly related to the
healthiness of the skin. The TEWL test is a method that can evaluate the dryness and moisture levels, assessing the healthiness
of the skin overall.
This test is mainly used for the management of atopic dermatitis patients and evaluation of treatment responses.
- Skin biopsy
- Skin biopsy is a test method that can detect the precise cause of skin ailments through a tissue biopsy test, which makes possible the diagnosis of intractable skin conditions and skin conditions that are difficult to diagnose with just a basic examination at other hospitals. This test is especially useful for diagnosis of oncogenous ailments.
- Otitis externa and
At SNU VMTH, digital otoscopes are available to precisely determine the external auditory meatus and eardrum status.
We are also focusing on the internal management of chronic, intractable otitis externa and otitis media.
- Hearing test
Assessment of hearing abilities of animals cannot be performed through subjective question and answer, unlike humans.
Therefore, the BAER(Brainstem Auditory Evoked Response) test is used to measure the response of the auditory stimulus to the auditory nervous system to determine whether or not the patient has completely lost hearing abilities.
- Allergic skin
Allergy care is a medical service that is at the center of SNU VMTH dermatology department. We focus on the diagnosis and
treatment of atopic dermatitis and food allergic ailments, which are considered to be one of the most problematic chronic skin
ailments in Korea. In order to diagnose atopic dermatitis, we carry out IDST(Intradermal Skin Test ), which offers the highest
diagnostic accuracy. To conduct this test, we have secured about 55 types of antigens for testing environmental allergens
according to domestic standards.
Also, for the antigen that is confirmed to be the causal substance of the atopy from the intradermal antigen testing on the patient, we perform customized immunotherapy suited to each individual patient to induce immunologic tolerance. Through this therapy, our patients may finally overcome the pain of atopic ailments.
- What is canine
- Allergic dermatitis is a skin disorder that causes a specific hypersensitive reaction to environmental agents, food, or insects in an animal, where the same agents do not cause any problems in healthy animals. Allergic dermatitis includes atopic dermatitis, food allergies, fleas, mites, and other allergic dermatitis caused by other external parasites, and many of these conditions are often observed together.
- What is
The immune system in mammals produces protein receptors that fends off substances foreign to their own body. These are
called antibodies. While there are many types of antibodies, unusual IgE antibody which reacts to a specific causal substance is
prevalent in the blood of a dog with allergy conditions.
These IgE antibodies bind to special mast cells on the skin and await contact with certain causative substances for contact.
If the antibodies make contact with these specific causative substances(allergens), mast cells will release a variety of immune-stimulating substances in order to destroy the intrusive external substance. As a result, various symptoms (e.g. itching or redness) are observed on areas like the skin following the hypersensitive reaction.
According to reports so far, house dust mites in bedspreads, sofas and carpets in our residential space are known as the major allergen causing allergies in dogs in Korea. However, in addition to mites, allergies can be caused by stimuli from any kind of pollen, fungi and food substances as well.
- Most common
Excessive grooming, such as licking around the toe or anus, or frequent scratching of the ear or the body, can be easily observed
as early symptoms of allergies. Afterwards, as these itching get worse, the dog‘s skin will start to turn red, and the scar from the
dog’s claws may cause secondary bacterial infections.
At this time, lesions such as hair loss, papules, dandruff, and scabies are commonly observed.
For the diagnosis of allergic dermatitis, tests are used to identify the allergen causing the itch. First, we try to exclude it is an
allergic reaction to external parasites such as fleas, mites, and shigellosis. Then diagnosis on food-related allergic dermatitis and
atopic dermatitis is conducted. Food-related allergic dermatitis is a hypersensitive reaction to certain foods. The diagnosis for
this type of dermatitis can be confirmed by providing a restricted diet to the animal for about 8 to 10 weeks.
Dogs with atopic dermatitis may also have food-related allergic dermatitis. In order to diagnose atopic dermatitis, all other diseases associated with itching must be ruled out first, then the diagnosis is confirmed after evaluation of food-related allergic dermatitis.
Serological IgE test, which a serologic test for patients with atopic dermatitis, performs initial screening of environmental allergens. Based on the results of this test, 50 different types of environmental allergens at SNU VMTH will be directly injected to the animal‘s skin to test for hypersensitive reactions.
This test, called the intradermal skin test (IDST), is a necessary test to detect allergic causes of atopic dermatitis. Based on the test results, information on taking immunotherapy as a substitute therapy option for drugs will be provided regarding the management of the atopic dermatitis.
As the purpose of treating allergic dermatitis is not to completely cure the ailment but to alleviate the itching as much as possible
and to appropriately control secondary skin issues caused by such itching, our treatment will aim to find the optimal way to
improve the quality of life for the animal and the owner. For management of food-related allergic dermatitis, elimination tests
such as ingredient restriction or hydrolyzed diet is tried first, and then provocation tests through provision of single food sources
is undertaken to identify suitable foods for the patient.
In the case of atopic dermatitis, it would be ideal if the IDST-identified allergen can be avoided at all times, but this is often not practically feasible. SNU VMTH is also applying customized immunotherapy for each individual patient, which is a treatment to induce immunity tolerance against the allergen causing atopic dermatitis in the patient‘s body.
In addition, we strive to minimize the itching that the patient feels by managing the allergy with whole-body medication or topical medication. The response to allergic dermatitis treatment varies from patient to patient.
Sometimes, owners would worry about delayed responses to treatments because they do not understand precisely this and end up giving up further treatment mid-process. But if you receive consistent treatment, you can expect positive responses within 3 months in the short run, and within a year in the long run.
치료방법 상세 Topical treatment Antibacterial Shampoo, Antifungal Shampoo, Moisturizer, Ointment, Whole-body Medication Systemic pharmacotherapy Antihistamines, antibiotics, immunomodulators, essential fatty acids Immunotherapy A therapy that induces immune tolerance by directly injecting an IDST-identified causative allergen into the body. Immunotherapy requires at least a year of continued treatment.
- 01.Subcutaneous Immunotherapy (SCIT)
- 02.Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT)
This is the easiest method for the owners as it is a method of inducing immunity tolerance by putting a certain amount of allergen under the tongue of the patient every day so that the allergen reaches the patient‘s lymphatic gland.
As the quality of life of companion animals increases, they also live longer. As animals age, they start to lose their hearing
abilities, and there is a growing demand from owners who want an accurate assessment.
Unlike humans who can simply answer the doctor‘s questions, animals require more objective assessment of their hearing.
Therefore, SNU VMTH dermatology department uses BAER (Brain Auditory Evoked Response) test on the animal‘s direct auditory nerve system through sound stimulation to determine whether or not the animal has completely lost the ability to hear sounds.
When the auditory stimuli reach the ear, they are transmitted to the spinal cord and the brain by physiological electrical signals, which leads to the perception of sound. BAER is a test that analyzes the waveforms that occur during this process.
- CO2 Laser
Benign lumps on the skin such as sebaceous adenomas or epidermal cysts, occurring as the result of aging skin, can sometimes
cause itching and limit the patient‘s activities. In such cases, removal of the skin lump is recommended. In local veterinary
hospitals, the patient is often put under anesthesia for lump removals. This can be time-consuming and costly, and can also put a
heavy toll on the animal's body. At SNU VMTH, CO2 Laser is used to conduct simple lump removals, which can be done without
anesthesia. CO2 Laser is a procedure that removes the lump on the skin by heating the water in the tissue using a laser that
emits strong light and heat of infrared wavelength, which destroys the lump with precision and with minimum bleeding and pain.
The procedure offers a high rate of restoration, and the recurrence rate is low as the laser can remove the origin of the lump.
- Otitis externa
Canine otitis externa(dog ear infection) is one of the most common skin diseases occurring among dogs. As there are many
sebaceous areas in the dog's ears, infections often occur if the environment is humid, or if the normal in-ear environment is
damaged by any genetic factors(allergic dermatitis, etc.) or other physical factors(foreign substances, tumors).
If the in-ear environment is moistened by various causes, it becomes easier for the bacteria to infest the dog, and yeast is overly reproduced in the ear. This may lead to a secondary infection.
Ear infections can lead to redness and pain with severe itching, and if it becomes chronic, it can lead to deformation of the eardrum or cause irritation on the middle ear which includes the cochlea, located behind the eardrum.
Afterwards, we evaluate the amount of mycobacteria in the ear and the state of inflammation through ear smearing cytology.