OBJECTIVES--To determine possible similarities and differences in clinical and laboratory features and treatment response between patients in Singapore with polymyositis (PM) and dermatomyositis (DM) and reported series. METHODS--Case records of adult patients (16 years old and above) referred to the 3 main electromyographic (EMG) laboratories in Singapore between 1 June 1986 and 31 May 1991 were reviewed if the referring diagnosis was myositis or myopathy for investigation. A computer search for adult patients with a diagnosis of PM/DM (ICD codes 710.3, 710.4, 517.8) who attended the main rheumatology and neurology centre during this period was also carried out. The criteria for PM/DM proposed by Bohan and Peter was adopted. RESULTS--The incidence of PM/DM was 7.7 cases per million population per year. There were 35 PM and 40 DM cases with a median age at diagnosis of 50.7 years (SD: 16.7) and significantly more females in the PM group (p < 0.05). At presentation, 86.7% had proximal myopathy, 34.7% had arthralgia/arthritis and 18.7% had cutaneous vasculitis. The creatine kinase level was elevated in 89.3% of patients and positive EMG and muscle biopsy in 79.4% and 76.4% respectively. Systemic lupus erythematosus was the commonest associated connective tissue disease. The percentage of patients with malignancy was higher in DM compared with PM (p < 0.01) and they were significantly older (mean age 61.8 years) (p < 0.001). Patients who achieved remission were significantly younger (mean age 46.4 years, p < 0.05). The overall mortality rate was 26.7% with infection and malignancy as the main causes of death. CONCLUSION--The results of the study suggest ethnicity does not influence the expression of PM/DM in view of the considerable similarities in frequency and clinical expression of disease in the population studied compared with series from other countries.
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.