Faecal Occult Blood Test

Case of the Month (Emma Scurrell September 2011)

Kerion dermatophytosis in a Cocker spaniel

 The following are cytological and histopathological specimens taken from a discrete 1.5cm alopecic cutaneous mass on the muzzle of a 10-month old male Cocker spaniel.

 Fig 1.  Fine needle aspirate. The predominant cell population consists of neutrophils and macrophages reflecting mixed active inflammation.

Fig 2.  Fine needle aspirate. Interspersed with the inflammatory cells are low numbers of fungal hyphae (red arrows) and fungal spores (black arrows).


Fig 3. H&E section. Histopathology reveals the presence of furunculosis in which free hair shafts (blue arrow) in the dermis are surrounded by a heavy inflammatory infiltrate composed of macrophages and neutrophils.

Fig 4. H&E section. On closer inspection, fungal spores similar to those seen cytologically are associated with the hair shafts (black arrows). Note the phagocytosed fungal spores within a macrophage (red arrow).

Final Diagnosis

Pyogranulomatous furunculosis associated with intralesional fungal hyphae and spores typical of dermatophytosis (ringworm).


Kerion dermatophytosis is an uncommon variant of canine ringworm in which the lesion is nodular and typically solitary, although multiple lesions may occur. It is most commonly associated with Microsporum gypseum however it can also occur with Trichophyton mentagrophytes and Microsporum canis infection. Fungal culture is required to differentiate although this may not always be successful in such lesions. Cutaneous nodules, which are essentially focal areas of furunculosis, most commonly occur on the face and forelegs, however any site may be affected. In the case of solitary lesions, surgical excision is usually curative. 

Previous Monthly Cases

Hypertensive Retinopathy January 2010
FIP in a cat - uncommon presentation February 2010
Phaeohyphomycosis    March 2010 
Scleral Rupture April 2010
Canine and feline epulides May 2010
Erythema multiforme in a labrador retreiver June 2010
Keloidal fibrosarcoma in a labrador retreiver July 2010
Cutaneous epitheliotropic lymphoma  August 2010 
Benign cutaneous histiocytoma  September 2010 
Iridociliary adenoma October 2010
Proliferative thrombovascular necrosis of the pinnae November 2010
Signet-ring cell carcinoma in the stomach of a dog December 2010
Cutaneous infiltrative lipoma in a labrador January 2011

Tonsillar squamous cell carcinoma February 2011
Canine orbital meningioma March 2011
"Lung-digit" syndrome in a cat April 2011
Hepatic amyloidosis in a cat May 2011
Haemophagocytic histiocytic sarcoma June 2011
Alternaria spp. infection in an immunocompromised dog July 2011
Ocular manifestation of lymphoma in a cat  August 2011

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Faecal Occult Blood Test