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Idiopathic Inflammatory Myopathies: Clinical Approach and Management.

Idiopathic inflammatory myopathies (IIM) are a group of chronic, autoimmune conditions affecting primarily the proximal muscles. The most common types are dermatomyositis (DM), polymyositis (PM), necrotizing autoimmune myopathy (NAM), and sporadic inclusion body myositis (sIBM). Patients typically present with sub-acute to chronic onset of proximal weakness manifested by difficulty with rising from a chair, climbing stairs, lifting objects, and combing hair. They are uniquely identified by their clinical presentation consisting of muscular and extramuscular manifestations. Laboratory investigations, including increased serum creatine kinase (CK) and myositis specific antibodies (MSA) may help in differentiating clinical phenotype and to confirm the diagnosis. However, muscle biopsy remains the gold standard for diagnosis. These disorders are potentially treatable with proper diagnosis and initiation of therapy. Goals of treatment are to eliminate inflammation, restore muscle performance, reduce morbidity, and improve quality of life. This review aims to provide a basic diagnostic approach to patients with suspected IIM, summarize current therapeutic strategies, and provide an insight into future prospective therapies.

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