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Did you know?
Dermatomyositis is often associated with autoimmune diseases, like lupus.
This condition is a muscle disease that affects people in 2 main ways:
- chronic muscle inflammation (swelling) and
- muscle weakness
Children and adults who have dermatomyositis can develop calcium deposits. These feel like hard bumps under the skin or in the muscle. The process of developing these calcium deposits is called calcinosis. When it occurs, calcinosis usually starts 1-3 years after dermatomyositis begins. Calcinosis is seen more often in children than adults.
If you have dermatomyositis, you should wear sunscreen and protective clothing.
In the case of calcium deposits that cause nerve pain and infections, surgery may be necessary.
The main symptom of this condition is a skin rash. This rash either comes right before or along with muscle weakness. Usually the rash is found on your:
Adults often experience other symptoms, including:
- sensitivity to light
- low-grade fever
- weight loss
- inflamed lungs
Treatment for dermatomyositis mostly involves treating the symptoms. Typically your doctor will prescribe:
- corticosteroid drug
- topic ointments
- physical therapy—to increase muscle strength and range of motion
- heat therapy (including microwave and ultrasound)