Cutaneous symptoms of dermatomyositis significantly impact patients' quality of life

J Am Acad Dermatol. 2006 Feb;54(2):217-20. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2004.12.015. Epub 2005 Dec 2.


Background: Dermatomyositis affects visible skin and causes disease symptoms that can affect patients' quality of life (QOL).

Methods: In all, 71 patients with dermatomyositis or dermatomyositis sine myositis completed two QOL measures (the Skindex-16 and the Dermatology Life Quality Index) and a visual analog scale for pruritus. Disease severity was assessed by Physician's Global Assessment.

Results: The mean Dermatology Life Quality Index score was 10.7 and the mean Skindex-16 score was 51.1. Itching contributed to impact on both the Dermatology Life Quality Index and Skindex-16. Females reported worse QOL.

Limitations: The effect of treatment on quality of life was not assessed in these analyses.

Conclusion: QOL impairment in dermatomyositis is greater than in other skin conditions including psoriasis and atopic dermatitis. Pruritus is an important treatable factor that significantly impacts QOL for patients with dermatomyositis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Dermatitis
  • Dermatomyositis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pruritus
  • Psoriasis
  • Quality of Life*