Comparison of serum cortisol concentration before and after intradermal testing in sedated and nonsedated dogs

Linda A. Frank From the Blanche Saunders Dermatology Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Box J-126, J Hillis Miller Health Center, Gainesville, FL 32610-0126.

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Gail A. Kunkle From the Blanche Saunders Dermatology Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Box J-126, J Hillis Miller Health Center, Gainesville, FL 32610-0126.

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Karin M. Beale From the Blanche Saunders Dermatology Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Box J-126, J Hillis Miller Health Center, Gainesville, FL 32610-0126.

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Summary

Serum cortisol concentration was evaluated in 71 dogs before and after a stressful procedure was performed. Thirty dogs were skin tested with sedation (group S), 21 dogs were skin tested without sedation (group NS), and 20 dogs had other dermatologic procedures performed (group C). Group-S dogs had significant (P < 0.001) decrease in serum cortisol concentration after skin testing, compared with baseline values. In contrast, dogs of groups NS and C had significant (P < 0.001) increase in poststress serum cortisol concentration. Mean cortisol concentration after stress was significantly lower for dogs of group S, compared with that for dogs of the other 2 groups.

The second part of the analysis consisted of determining the number of false-negative skin test results for dogs of groups S and NS and comparing these with serum cortisol concentration. Difference in the number of suspected atopic dogs with negative skin test results (false-negative) was not evident between groups S and NS. Also, difference was not apparent between cortisol concentration in dogs that had positive or false-negative skin test results in either group. This finding indicates that high serum cortisol concentration does not affect results of skin testing in suspected atopic dogs.

Summary

Serum cortisol concentration was evaluated in 71 dogs before and after a stressful procedure was performed. Thirty dogs were skin tested with sedation (group S), 21 dogs were skin tested without sedation (group NS), and 20 dogs had other dermatologic procedures performed (group C). Group-S dogs had significant (P < 0.001) decrease in serum cortisol concentration after skin testing, compared with baseline values. In contrast, dogs of groups NS and C had significant (P < 0.001) increase in poststress serum cortisol concentration. Mean cortisol concentration after stress was significantly lower for dogs of group S, compared with that for dogs of the other 2 groups.

The second part of the analysis consisted of determining the number of false-negative skin test results for dogs of groups S and NS and comparing these with serum cortisol concentration. Difference in the number of suspected atopic dogs with negative skin test results (false-negative) was not evident between groups S and NS. Also, difference was not apparent between cortisol concentration in dogs that had positive or false-negative skin test results in either group. This finding indicates that high serum cortisol concentration does not affect results of skin testing in suspected atopic dogs.

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