Dermatomyositis occurring in 17 patients was classified as either active or inactive by clinical criteria. Three patients with dermatomyositis in the inactive phase were all found to have normal serum transaminase levels, while 14 with the disease in the active phase had high levels that were, in some cases, extreme. The average for 50 normal subjects was 1.01 micromoles per hour per milliliter. Some patients with disease in the active phase had levels 10 times as high. High values were also found in certain conditions, such as lupus erythematosus, that must be considered in the differential diagnosis of dermatomyositis. In four patients with dermatomyositis clinical improvement was accompanied by decreasing values of the serum transaminase. Serum transaminase determinations are therefore useful in the diagnosis of dermatomyositis and in evaluating the patient's progress during treatment.
de Moragas JM, Perry HO, Fleisher GA. SERUM GLUTAMIC OXALACETIC TRANSAMINASE IN DERMATOMYOSITIS. JAMA. 1957;165(15):1936–1938. doi:10.1001/jama.1957.02980330038009
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