Dermatomyositis associated with nivolumab therapy for melanoma: a case report and review of the literature

Dermatol Online J. 2020 Aug 15;26(8):13030/qt4c21b068.


We present a rare case of dermatomyositis associated with nivolumab therapy for melanoma. Nivolumab is an immune checkpoint inhibitor that blocks the programmed death-1 (PD1) receptor and has a number of associated immunotherapy related adverse events. Although most are T-cell mediated, some are antibody mediated mimics of classical autoimmune diseases. We review the characteristics of other cases of anti-PD1 associated dermatomyositis and the recent literature to better understand how to classify and treat this challenging immunotherapy related adverse event.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological / therapeutic use
  • Dermatomyositis / chemically induced*
  • Dermatomyositis / pathology
  • Humans
  • Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Melanoma / drug therapy
  • Nivolumab / adverse effects*
  • Nivolumab / therapeutic use
  • Programmed Cell Death 1 Receptor / antagonists & inhibitors*


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological
  • Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors
  • Programmed Cell Death 1 Receptor
  • Nivolumab