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Drugs and Diagnostic Tests

Substances that are gernerally oily in nature. These substances are used for dry skin caused by aging, excessive bathing, and psoriasis; examples: Dermassage and Desitin


Agents that cause or promote loosening of horny (keratin) layers of the skin. These agents may be used for acne, warts, psoriasis, corns, calluses, and fungal infections; examples: Duofilm, Keralyt, and Compound W.


Agents that inhibit the conduction of nerve impulses from sensory nerves and thereby reduce pain and discomfort. The agents may be used topically to reduce discomfort assoicated with insect bites, burns, and poison ivy; examples: Solarcaine, Xylocaine, and Dyclone

Local Anesthetic Agents

Agents that prevent or relieve itching; exampes: Topical---PBZ (tripelennamine HCl); Oral---Benadryl (diphenhydramine HCl); and Atarax (hydrooxyzine HCl)

Antipruritic Agents

Agents that destroy or stop the growth of microorganisms. These agents are used to prevent infection associated with minor skin abrasions and to treat superficial skin infections and acne. Several antibiotic agents are combined in a single product to take advantage of the different antimicrobial spectrum of the drug; examples: Neosporin, Polysporin, and Mycitracin

Antibiotic Agents

Agents that destroy or inhibit the growth of fungi and yeast. These agents are used to treat fungus and/or yeast infection of the skin, nails, and scalp; examples: Fungizone (amphotericin B), Lotrimin (clotrimazole), and Lamisil (terbinafine)

Antifungal Agents

Agents that combat specific viral diseases. Zovirax (acyclovir) is used in the treatment of herpes simplex virus types 1 and 2, varicella-zoster, Epstein-Barr, and cytomegalovirus. Relenza (zanamivir) has antiviral activity against influenza A and B viruses

Antiviral Agents

Agents that prevent or inhibit the growth of pathogens. Antiseptics are generally applied to the surface of living tissue; examples: Isopropyl alcohol and Zephrian (benzalkonium chloride)

Antiseptic Agents

Agents used to relieve the swelling, tenderness, redness, and pain of inflammation. Topically applied corticosteroids are used in the treatment of dermatitis and psoriasis; examples: Hydrocortisone, Decadron (dexamethasome), and Temovate (clobetasol propionate); Oral corticosteriods are used in the treatment of contact dermatitis, such as in poison ivy, when the symptoms are severe; example: Sterapred (prednisone) 12-day unipak

Anti-inflammatory Agents

Tests performed to identiy the presence of the Tubercle bacilli. The tine, Heaf, or Mantoux test may be used. The tine test and Heaf test are intradermal tests performed using a sterile, disposable, multiple-puncture lancet. The tuberculin is on metal tines that are pressed into the skin. A hardened raised area at the test site 48 to 72 hours later indicates the presence of the pathogens in the blood. In the Manoux test 0.1mL of purified protein derivative (PPD) tuberculin is intradermally injected. Test results are read 48 to 72 hours after administration

Tuberculosis Skin Tests

A test performed on sweat to determine the level of chloride concentration on the skin. In cystic fibrosis, there is an increase in skin chloride

Sweat Test (Chloride)

A microscopic examination of a small piece of tissue that has been surgicalled scraped from a pustule. The specimen is placed on a slide and stained, and the type of viral infection can be identified

Tzank Test

A test done on wound exudate to determine the presence of microorganisms. An effective antibiotic can be prescribed for identified microbes

Wound Culture

Any skin lesion that exhibits signs or characteristics of malignancy may be excised and examined microscopically to establish a diagnosis. Usually only a small piece of living tissue is needed for examination

Biopsy (Skin)

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