What is the role of immunosuppressants in the treatment of polymyositis?

Updated: Feb 12, 2018
  • Author: Mythili Seetharaman, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

Immunosuppressive agents are indicated in patients who do not improve with steroids within a reasonable period (ie, 4 wk) or in whom adverse effects from corticosteroids develop. Patients with poor prognostic indicators, such as dysphagia or dysphonia, are likely to require immunosuppressive agents. Under these circumstances, methotrexate is the second-line agent. Azathioprine, cyclophosphamide, chlorambucil, and cyclosporine have been used with varying success as second-line agents for polymyositis.Patients with inclusion body myositis usually respond poorly to corticosteroids and immunosuppressive agents.


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