Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Skin: acral lick granuloma

Synonym(s): Acral lick dermatitis

Contributor(s): Glen Cousquer, Rosanna Marsella, David Scarff, Stephen White

Introduction

  • Cause: multifactorial.
  • Signs: persistent licking and chewing of local area of skin producing well-circumscribed, alopecic plaques, often ulcerated.
  • Dorsal aspect of distal limb (more commonly thoracic limb, often the left thoracic limb).
  • Diagnosis: clinical signs, histopathology, radiography.
  • Treatment: antibiotics, behavior-modifying medications, topical anti-inflammatory medications.
  • Prognosis: dependent on underlying causes; may be controllable but not curable.
    Print off the owner factsheetAcral lick granuloma to give to your client.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

Pathophysiology

  • Hypersensitivity/trauma/orthopedic lesion/foreign body +/- psychological component, eg attention-seeking, not simply boredom → persistent licking of affected site → alopecia, erosion, ulceration → infection → scarring → lesion which is intrinsically pruritic, ie even if underlying cause can be eliminated → self-perpetuating licking.

Timecourse

  • Chronic.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Shumaker A K, Angus J C, Coyner K S, Loeffler D G, Rankin S C, Lewis T P (2008) Microbiological and histopathological features of canine acral lick dermatitis. Vet Dermatol 19 (5), 288-98 PubMed.
  • Denerolle P, White S D, Taylor T S, Vandenabeele S I (2007) Organic diseases mimicking acral lick dermatitis in six dogs. JAAHA 43 (4), 215-220 PubMed.
  • Hewson C J et al (1998) Efficacy of clomipramine in the treatment of canine compulsive disorder. JAVMA 213 (12), 1760-1766 PubMed.
  • Wynchank D, Berk M (1998) Fluoxetine treatment of acral lick dermatitis in dogs - a placebo-controlled randomized double blind trial. Depress Anxiety (1), 21-23 PubMed.
  • Rivers B, Walters P A & McKeever P J (1993) Treatment of canine acral lick dermatitis with radiation therapy - 17 cases (1979-1991). JAAHA 29 (6), 541-544 VetMedResource.
  • Goldberger B A, Rapoport J L (1991) Canine acral lick dermatitis: response to antiobsessional drug clomipramine. JAAHA 27 (2), 179-182 VetMedResource.
  • White S D (1990) Naltrexone for treatment of acral lick dermatitis in dogs. JAVMA 196 (7), 1073-1076 PubMed.
  • Owen L N (1989) Canine lick granuloma treated with radiotherapy. JSAP 30 (8), 454-456 VetMedResource.


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