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Doctors' Answers to "Frequently Asked Questions" - Polymyositis
Answer: What is your sedimentation rate? CPK? Certainly can be adrenal insufficiency depending on the length of time you have been on the steroids. Try going to alternate day therapy-a high dose one day and a much lower dosage the next. This would answer your question as to whether more steroids would fix the problem.
Answer: Polymyositis is an inflammatory disease of the muscles. The cause is not known. There is a variation called dermato-polymyositis that also affects the skin. Treatment of this disease centers on steroids with other immune suppressants used if this is insufficient. There is an association between cancers and the onset of polymyositis that is, one should consider that there may be a concurrent tumor-especially of the colon. However, most patients do not develop cancers and most do not have concurrent tumors. While he may have a long course of treatment, most patients do not die with polymyositis, although it is possible in severe cases. Like many of the autoimmune disorders, there is a wide variation in severity of cases from mild to severe.
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