March 07, 2016
1 min read

Patients with clinically amyopathic dermatomyositis, malignancy represent unique patient subset

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A higher risk for malignancy was found in patients with clinically amyopathic dermatomyositis compared to other patients with dermatomyositis, most of whom required more than one treatment after diagnosis, according to recently presented research.

Researchers collected data from Cleveland Clinic’s electronic medical records for patients with dermatomyositis by ICD-9 code 710.3 who had more than two clinical visits since 2004. Sufficient clinical data was obtained for 249 patients who had clinical and serological data available prior to the onset of treatment.

Malignancy in patients with clinically amyopathic dermatomyositis (CADM) was associated within 5 years of CADM diagnosis with the exception of patients with common, non-melanoma skin cancers. Malignancy was identified in 44 patients.

Photosensitivity and periungual erythema were associated with malignancy following initial treatment with hydroxychloroquine or corticosteroids. Improved skin involvement was observed in 29 of 44 patients after first follow-up, but steroid-sparing medications were required in 27 patients (90%) who had follow-up data available after 2 years.

Patients with CADM and malignancy were more likely to have a response to treatment of cutaneous symptoms compared to dermatomyositis patients without malignancy, but serologic abnormalities, cutaneous involvement and response to the first treatment were observed. – by Shirley Pulawski


Galimberti F, et al. Paper #2746. Presented at: American Academy of Dermatology 74th Annual Meeting; March 4-8, 2016; Washington, D.C.

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.