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What is Polymyositis?

Q: I am a resident of Chandigarh. My daughter, who is 15 yrs old, was suffering from a typical body pain. It started in July,2002 as pain on her left hand at the bottom of the smallest finger which extended to her back and then to her feet. Prior to that she was suffering from acute cough and cold. When the pain became acute we consulted a local Neurologist, who after performing all blood and urine tests, advised EMG and diagnosed the condition as Polymyositis. In order to have a second opinion I went to Kolkata and consulted one neurologist and a physician who confirmed the same as Myositis only. The doctor at Chandigarh advised us a muscle biopsy and thereafter medicine to be prescribed. The doctors at Calcutta had advised only observation as the condition is self remitting. The physician at Kolkata has prescribed a pain killer. We have observed that the pain comes at he time of her period and continues during it. When it becomes acute she takes the medicine prescribed by the Kolakata doctor. This is a muscle relaxant. In view of the above, please let me know what we should do: 1. Whether we should accept the finding of the Doctor of Chandigarh or 2. we should follow the advise of the Kolakata doctor or 3. Is it somthing else? Kindly advise. Thanking you, D.Chatterjee

A:From your story I doubt this is Polymyositis. The hall mark of polymyositis is weakness of muscles and inability to rise from the sitting position etc. and pain is secondary. A blood test CPK is the best way to make a diagnosis. Polymyositis is rarely on one side. I think if the pain just comes once in a while during menses a pain killer is enough. Some women accumulate water before menses and that can cause problem and a drug like Ditide 1 daily for 5 days before menses may help.

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