|A retrospective study using light microscopy was performed to assess the prevalence of surface and follicular bacteria and fungi in skin biopsy specimens from 247 horses with inflammatory dermatoses and from 27 horses with healthy skin.
Cocci were found on the surface of specimens from 23% (95% confidence interval 18%, 29%) and 7% (95% confidence interval, 0%, 19%), respectively, of horses with skin disease and horses with healthy skin.
Of the nine dermatoses with at least 10 cases in our series of horses, bacterial folliculitis had a higher prevalence of surface bacteria (57%; 95% confidence interval 34%, 81%) than the other eight (which all had a prevalence < 30%).
There was a significant association between the prevalence of surface cocci and the extent of epidermal hyperkeratosis.
Cocci were found in the keratin of noninflamed hair follicles in only 2% of the horses with skin disease, and in none of the horses with healthy skin.
Fungal poroconidia were found on the surface of 4% of the horses with skin disease, and on none of the horses with healthy skin. Yeasts were not found.
Source: COOK, CHRISTOPHER P., SCOTT, DANNY W., ERB, HOLLIS N. & MILLER, WILLIAM H. (2005): Bacteria and fungi on the surface and within noninflamed hair follicles of skin biopsy specimens from horses with healthy skin or inflammatory dermatoses. In: Veterinary Dermatology 16 (1), 47-51.