Pattern analysis is the foundation of Veterinary Dermatopathology of inflammatory skin disease. It follows the clinical appearance of lesions - pruritic, scaling, crusting, ulceration, and nodular skin diseases. Pattern analysis points to the pathogenesis of the inflammatory disease and it allows the histological section to speak to you. Yes, you can be one with the tissue and the dermatopathology force can be with you.


The inflammatory (Dermatitis) patterns were designed by Drs Danny Scott and Julie Yager. They are evolving with greater knowledge, but the logic remains.

I gave an educational session to dermatology residents on this topic and the text is here.

I divide them into 8 inflammatory patterns. In reality I use 7 patterns and list numbers 7 and 8 as subpatterns of Vesiculopustular Dermatitis. I also dropped the atrophic pattern and list it in the noninflammatory patterns

  1. Vasculitis
  2. Panniculitis
  3. Nodular dermatitis
  4. Folliculitis, Furunculosis, Sebaceous adenitis
  5. Perivascular Dermatitis
  6. Cytotoxic Interface Dermatitis
  7. Intraepidermal Vesiculopustular Dermatitis
  8. Subepidermal Vesiculopustular Dermatitis

You will notice that I took some liberties with the order. This is very different to the order that most people place them into. Many people start with the generic Perivascular Dermatitis and then list patterns from the skin surface down to the subcutis. Most Dermatopathogists look deep and scan the skin section from the bottom to the top. This is good form - so this is how I listed them.