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October 1973

Azathioprine Therapy in Polymyositis

Author Affiliations

Washington, DC

From the Rheumatology Service, Malcolm Grow USAF Medical Center, Andrews AFB, Washington, DC. Dr. Benson is now at the Boston University School of Medicine, and Dr. Aldo is now at the Tufts New England Medical Center, Boston.

Arch Intern Med. 1973;132(4):547-551. doi:10.1001/archinte.1973.03650100063012

Four patients with polymyositis were treated with azathioprine. Each had been treated initially with prednisone and had become unresponsive or suffered severe complications of steroid therapy. Response to azathioprine therapy, as measured by improvement in muscle strength and decrease in serum enzyme levels, was favorable in all patients. Treatment with azathioprine permitted decrease in prednisone dosage with resultant resolution of steroid side effects. No important complications of azathioprine therapy were encountered. We advocate the use of azathioprine in the treatment of polymyositis.