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    Dermatomyositis

    Important
    It is possible that the main title of the report Dermatomyositis is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

    Synonyms

    • Idiopathic inflammatory myopathy
    • IIM
    • ADM
    • Polymyositis
    • Childhood dermatomyositis

    Disorder Subdivisions

    • Juvenile (Childhood) Dermatomyositis (JDMS)
    • Adult Dermatomyositis
    • Dermatomyositis sine myositis

    General Discussion

    Dermatomyositis is a progressive connective tissue disorder characterized by inflammatory and degenerative changes of the muscles and skin. Associated symptoms and physical findings may vary widely from case to case. Muscle abnormalities may begin with aches and weakness of the muscles of the trunk, upper arms, hips, and thighs (proximal muscles). Muscles may be stiff, sore, and tender and, eventually, show signs of degeneration (atrophy). Affected individuals may experience difficulty in performing certain functions, such as raising their arms and/or climbing stairs. In addition, affected individuals may experience speech and swallowing difficulties.

    Skin abnormalities associated with dermatomyositis often include a distinctive reddish-purple rash (heliotrope rash) on the upper eyelids, across the cheeks and bridge of the nose in a "butterfly" distribution, the forehead, or additional skin regions; scaling and degenerative (atrophic) changes of affected skin on the extending surfaces of the knuckles, elbows, knees, and/or other regions (Gottron's sign); an abnormal accumulation of fluid (edema) in body tissues surrounding the eyes; and/or other features.

    The symptoms of childhood dermatomyositis are similar to those associated with the adult form of the disorder. However, onset is usually more sudden. In addition, abnormal accumulations of calcium deposits (calcifications) in muscle and skin tissues as well as involvement of the digestive (gastrointestinal [GI]) tract are more common in the childhood form of dermatomyositis.

    Although the exact cause of dermatomyositis is not known, it is thought to be an autoimmune disorder.

    Resources

    Myositis Association
    1737 King Street
    Suite 600
    Alexandria, VA 22314
    USA
    Tel: (703)299-4850
    Fax: (703)535-6752
    Tel: (800)821-7356
    Email: tma@myositis.org
    Internet: http://www.myositis.org

    American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association, Inc.
    22100 Gratiot Ave.
    Eastpointe, MI 48021
    Tel: (586)776-3900
    Fax: (586)776-3903
    Tel: (800)598-4668
    Email: aarda@aarda.org
    Internet: http://www.aarda.org/

    Arthritis Foundation
    1330 West Peachtree Street, Suite 100
    Atlanta, GA 30309
    USA
    Tel: (404)872-7100
    Tel: (800)283-7800
    Email: arthritisfoundation@arthritis.org
    Internet: http://www.arthritis.org

    Muscular Dystrophy Association
    3300 East Sunrise Drive
    Tucson, AZ 85718-3208
    USA
    Tel: (520)529-2000
    Fax: (520)529-5300
    Tel: (800)572-1717
    Email: mda@mdausa.org
    Internet: http://www.mda.org/

    Myositis Support Group
    146 Newtown Road
    Woolston
    Southampton, S019 9HR
    United Kingdom
    Tel: 02380449708
    Fax: 02380396402
    Email: msg@myositis.org.uk
    Internet: http://www.myositis.org.uk

    NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
    Information Clearinghouse
    One AMS Circle
    Bethesda, MD 20892-3675
    USA
    Tel: (301)495-4484
    Fax: (301)718-6366
    Tel: (877)226-4267
    TDD: (301)565-2966
    Email: NIAMSinfo@mail.nih.gov
    Internet: http://www.niams.nih.gov/

    Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
    PO Box 8126
    Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
    Tel: (301)251-4925
    Fax: (301)251-4911
    Tel: (888)205-2311
    TDD: (888)205-3223
    Internet: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/

    Madisons Foundation
    PO Box 241956
    Los Angeles, CA 90024
    Tel: (310)264-0826
    Fax: (310)264-4766
    Email: getinfo@madisonsfoundation.org
    Internet: http://www.madisonsfoundation.org

    Autoimmune Information Network, Inc.
    PO Box 4121
    Brick, NJ 08723
    Fax: (732)543-7285
    Email: autoimmunehelp@aol.com

    European Society for Immunodeficiencies
    1-3 rue de Chantepoulet
    Geneva, CH 1211
    Switzerland
    Tel: 410229080484
    Fax: 41229069140
    Email: esid@kenes.com
    Internet: http://www.esid.org

    AutoImmunity Community
    Email: moderator@autoimmunitycommunity.org
    Internet: http://www.autoimmunitycommunity.org

    Myositis Support Group at the Hospital for Special Surgery
    2nd Floor Conference Center, Room A
    535 East 70th Street
    New York, NY 10021
    Tel: (212)774-7623
    Fax: (212)774-2333
    Email: fischbeins@hss.edu
    Internet: http://www.hss.edu/MyositisGroup.asp

    Child Neurology Foundation
    201 Chicago Ave, #200
    Minneapolis, MN 55415
    USA
    Tel: (952)641-6100
    Fax: (952)881-6276
    Tel: (877)263-5430
    Email: jstone@childneurologyfoundation.org
    Internet: http://www.childneurologyfoundation.org

    Cure JM Foundation
    826 Lynwood Drive
    Encinitas, CA 92024
    USA
    Tel: (760)487-1079
    Fax: (760)230-2243
    Email: info@curejm.com
    Internet: http://www.curejm.org

    For a Complete Report:

    This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

    The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

    It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

    This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

    For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site www.rarediseases.org or email orphan@rarediseases.org

    Last Updated: 7/23/2007
    Copyright 1986, 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

    WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization for Rare Disorders

    Last Updated: May 28, 2015
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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