Skin & Ear Cytology & Culture | Centre for Veterinary Education

Skin & Ear Cytology & Culture

Skin and Ear Cytology and Culture

This course will help you optimise your approach to skin and ear canal sampling to enable more targeted and effective treatment plans for your inflammatory and infectious skin disease and otitis cases.

This course will cover optimal collection and processing techniques for useful tests, together with an outline of when tests are indicated. Important principles for interpreting samples and a wide range of cytology images are also provided as a valuable clinical resource.

Optimal treatment choices, based on cytology findings, will be outlined for otitis and common secondary and primary skin infections. Finally, a series of cases will be presented to reinforce the material covered. Participants will be encouraged to practice skin cytology and culture techniques on their own cases throughout the course, and present findings to the tutor for evaluation and to the group for discussion.

Prior knowledge: ​a broad understanding of common inflammatory and infectious causes of skin and ear diseases will be helpful for working through this course efficiently. However, the course will briefly review some of the key aspects of common diseases that are relevant to diagnostic testing and treatment choices.

Veterinary nurses with a special interest in the topic are welcome to enrol in this course. Please be aware that the course is designed for qualified veterinarians and you should consider this in light of your knowledge and experience before you register.

The TimeOnline nurse rate is the same as the Recent Grad/Part-time member rate in the table below. If you are a nurse and would like to register please contact the CVE on +61 2 9351 7979.

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Perform commonly used skin cytology and microbial culturing tests using optimal techniques

  • Evaluate cytology samples from inflammatory and infectious skin disease and otitis cases independently and accurately

  • Interpret results from cytology and microbial culture tests accurately

  • Formulate targeted treatment and/or further diagnostic plans based on cytology results together with clinical findings for a range of inflammatory and infectious skin and ear canal diseases, including allergies, infectious diseases such as dermatophytosis and dermatophilosis, and rarer immune-mediated and deep infectious diseases

  • Recognise if secondary bacterial and yeast infections require specific targeted treatment, or when it is appropriate to focus on managing the underlying disease

  • Recognise when microbial culture testing is indicated, and have improved ability to analyse microbial culture test results to accurately guide optimal therapies.


  1. Sampling & Processing 

  2. Interpretation of Cytology & Culture Findings

  3. Treatment &/or further diagnostic choices

  4. Case Studies

Course Delivery

This course includes:

  • Written notes, photographs and case studies

  • Self-assessed multiple choice quizzes to test your knowledge and understanding

  • A discussion forum for conversation, debate and information exchange with your peers and tutors

  • An electronic certificate available for download upon successful completion of the course

The estimated time to complete this course is 10 hours and it will be open for 4 weeks.


Monday 3 - Sunday 30 September 2018
Delivered Online


BVSc (Hons) MACVSc (Feline Med.) FACVSc (Dermatology)

Linda Vogelnest graduated from the University of Sydney in 1984 and worked in private and university small animal practice in Australia and England for over ten years before following a long time interest in dermatology. Linda achieved Membership of the ACVSc in Feline Medicine in 1997 and Fellowship in Veterinary Dermatology in 2003. She ran a small and large animal dermatology service at the University of Sydney from 1999-2012, before moving to private referral practice at the Small Animal Specialist Hospital in 2013. Linda has authored and co-authored numerous scientific publications, and lectured in both Australia and internationally. She continues to teach pre-clinical dermatology to veterinary students at the University of Sydney along with promoting a greater understanding of dermatology at all levels. Linda's special interests include atopic dermatitis, ear diseases, dermatohistopathology, skin surface cytology sampling, and dermatology in exotics and horses.

Course Fees

Member TypeTimeOnline
Recent Grad / Part-time Member$289
Student Member$145
Non-member / eMember$578
*Members include: Practice, Professional and Academic members


The TimeOnline nurse rate is the same as the Recent Grad/Part-time member rate in the table above. 

Repeat CPD Participant Discount*

If you have:

  • Completed 2 or more Distance Education (DE) courses in the previous 5 years, you are eligible for a 10% discount on future DE courses.
  • Participated in a CVE DE, TimeOnline or face-to-face CPD in the past 12 months you are eligible for a 10% discount for further registrations (excluding DE, workshops, the Practical Ultrasound -Intensive Short Course and the Recent Graduate Survival Seminar).

*Discounts are not cumulative. For further information about discount options for multiple registrations at the one event, please read the full Terms & Conditions.

Discounts and nurse registrations can’t be processed online. Please contact the CVE on +61 2 9351 7979 (Monday to Friday, AEST 9am to 5pm) or