Use of hyposensitization injections to control seasonal pruritus in a Bactrian camel (Camelus bactrianus)

Laurie J. Gage, Sophie I J Vandenabeele, Stephen D White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A 9-yr-old, female Bactrian camel (Camelus bactrianus) developed severe pruritus in June 1993. During the next 8 yr, the camel exhibited annual episodes of pruritus and epiphora, generally beginning in June and subsiding in October of each year. These signs could usually be controlled with topical agents and fly repellents, although pruritus flare-ups were effectively controlled with intermittent injections of diphenhydramine and corticosteroids. There were no signs during the colder months. The pruritus became more severe and difficult to control when the camel reached its 18th year. Histopathologic descriptions of skin biopsies taken from several sites suggested a hypersensitivity reaction with secondary changes because of bacterial infection or corticosteroid administration (or both). An intradermal test (IDT) performed using 62 allergens regionalized to Northern California resulted in 17 positive test sites. Hyposensitization therapy was initiated using allergens chosen on the basis of exposure, availability, and the results of the IDT, using standard protocols. The clinical signs of pruritus were markedly reduced in the 2 yr after the hyposensitization injections were initiated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)88-94
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2005


  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Bactrian camel
  • Camelus bactrianus
  • Hyposensitization
  • Pruritus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • veterinary(all)


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