Juvenile dermatomyositis is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system causes inflammation of the blood vessels in the body tissue.
Symptoms of this condition include:
In addition to performing a full physical exam, your child’s rheumatologist will use one or more of the following tests in order to diagnose this condition:
If the pediatrician suspects that your child may have juvenile dermatomyositis, it is important that a pediatric rheumatologist see your child as soon as possible to make an assessment. Rheumatologists are specially trained to diagnose and treat such conditions and can help guide you and your child through treatment and management of juvenile dermatomyositis.
The course of treatment that your child’s rheumatologist will prescribe for juvenile dermatomyositis depends on the severity of the disease. Often, your child’s doctor will first prescribe steroids to reduce swelling and inflammation. Your child will also likely take immunosuppressant medicines, which reduce the immune system’s overactivity and decrease the symptoms related to this condition. As exposure to direct sunlight often worsens the symptoms of juvenile dermatomyositis, your child should avoid exposure to the sun as much as possible.
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