Polymyositis And Dermatomyositis Symptoms And Treatment

What Is Dermatomyositis?

Dermatomyositis is a form of myositis. In this disease affect muscles and skin inflammation. Especially the skin around your eyes and mouth and on the knuckles of your hands.
Dermatomyositis is similar to polymyositis. With polymyositis are only inflamed muscles. Both diseases are chronic: they do not go over.

The cause of myositis is not yet known. However, researchers think it myositis is an autoimmune disease: the immune system turns against the body.

To treat dermatomyositis can get medication for the inflammation (corticosteroids).

Dermatomyositis is a rare disease. The disease mainly occurs in people between forty and sixty years, but they can also develop it. Women are twice as likely as men dermatomyositis.

Forms Of Polymyositis And Dermatomyositis

There are two forms of poly- and dermatomyositis.
  • Primary Poly-and dermatomyositis
In this form, someone just polymyositis or dermatomyositis.
  • Secondary Poly-and dermatomyositis
In this form, someone polymyositis or dermatomyositis and a connective tissue disease.
Examples of this connective tissue diseases are scleroderma, lupus (SLE), and rheumatoid arthritis.
In this form, the muscle inflammations very less. You have less pain and strength loss than the primary form.

Signs And Symptoms Of Dermatomyositis

 In this disease affect muscles and skin inflammation Polymyositis And Dermatomyositis Symptoms And Treatment

The main symptoms of dermatomyositis include:
  • Weakness
You have less power:
  1. In the muscles of the upper arms and thighs. Get up, lift the arms and climbing stairs is often difficult;
  2. In the muscles of the neck. You have trouble lifting your head;
  3. In the muscles of the neck and throat. You have trouble swallowing. Also, change your vote;
  4. Or in the respiratory muscles in the lungs. This causes shortness of breath, usually only during exercise. If myositis is very severe, you are also short of breath at rest.
  • Skin Infections
You get inflammation, especially around your eyes and mouth and on the knuckles of your hands. The skin is blotchy and red. The inflammation hurt and itch. Sometimes there are also inflammation in the knees, ankles and eyelids.

In addition, you may experience:
  1. fever;
  2. unintentional weight loss;
  3. painful or tender joints;
  4. tiredness.

How Does The Doctor Determines That You Have Polymyositis/Dermatomyositis?

To find out if you have polymyositis or dermatomyositis, the doctor will first ask about your symptoms. Then a physical examination.

Then the doctor takes some blood from you. This shows they investigate in a laboratory. The lab technician looks particularly if there are certain muscle enzymes (proteins) are in your blood. This muscle enzymes into the blood when your muscles are damaged by myositis. Also, the laboratory technician measures the rate at which red blood cells to the bottom of a special tube bags (erythrocyte sedimentation rate). This goes for people with myositis much faster than normal.

In addition, perhaps the following necessary investigations:
  1. Muscle biopsy. The doctor takes a small piece of muscle tissue this way. She looks at this piece of tissue under the microscope. The doctor looks as if the muscle fibers are damaged. For skin inflammations may examine the doctor the same way a piece of skin on inflammatory cells.
  2. Electrical myogram (EMG).
  3. Electro-cardiogram (ECG).
  4. Pulmonary function testing if you are short of breath.
  5. Research esophagus with swallowing difficulties and if you suffer from heartburn.
  6. Muscle strength measurement. Doctor measures how much power do your muscles.

Treatment Of Polymyositis And Dermatomyositis

To treat myositis you get medication for the inflammation. These are usually corticosteroids (prednisone).

In the first period of the disease, you probably have to take a high dose prednisone. Prednisone inhibits the inflammation often in a matter of days or weeks. The sooner the infections are inhibited, the less muscle cells break down and the more muscle you have left.
You get the high dose prednisone it until the muscle recovers and / or number of muscle enzymes in the blood decreased. This takes about four weeks.

After the initial period, the physician gradually decreases the dose of prednisone. The aim is to end up being the lowest possible dose to come out.

Some people with myositis have besides prednisone still need another anti-inflammatory, such as azathioprine or methotrexate.

For skin infections you get the same medications as for muscle inflammation. In addition, help ointments, usually mixed with prednisone like drugs.

Physical Activity In Polymyositis And Dermatomyositis

At polymyositis and dermatomyositis are exercise and physical therapy is important.

You can start with physical therapy once the drugs catch on, so as soon as you feel an improvement.
A physical therapist will give you exercises. By these exercises:
  1. keep the joints in motion;
  2. the pain and stiffness less.
In a quiet period of the disease it is important to move. Movement improves your muscle strength. You bring the muscles that affected weather in condition.
It is better to move than a short time regularly once a week very intensive. Good forms of exercise are: swimming in warm water, fitness, cycling and hiking.

Is the myositis active? Then rest the main drug. The muscle fibers are inflamed and can become damaged by exercises.

How Expired Polymyositis/Dermatomyositis?

In most people with polymyositis/dermatomyositis able to calm the inflammation with medications. How many restrictions someone only to the disease depends on the amount of muscle cells that are affected. It also depends on the damage caused in the lungs, the esophagus or the heart.

In some people with myositis, the drugs are not enough. They lose a lot of muscle strength. Thereby they have over time a mobility scooter or a wheelchair, another tool for motor disabled people. If the respiratory muscles can weaken a very oxygen treatment are needed.

It is not known why the disease sometimes mild, sometimes serious. Even if the myositis is quiet for a long time, there is always a chance that the muscle inflammation come back. In General, though: the longer the symptoms stay away, the less likely the disease comes back.

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