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November 24, 2021

Dermatomyositis With Carcinoma of Unknown Primary Disease in the Head and Neck Diagnosed by Muscle Biopsy During Neck Dissection

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Okayama University Academic Field of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Okayama, Japan
  • 2Department of Otorhinolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Kagawa Rosai Hospital, Kagawa, Japan
  • 3Department of Internal Medicine, Kagawa Rosai Hospital, Kagawa, Japan
  • 4Department of Pathology, Kagawa Rosai Hospital, Kagawa, Japan
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2022;148(2):195-196. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2021.3392

Dermatomyositis is an idiopathic inflammatory myopathy that can occur with a cutaneous eruption, worsening muscle weakness, and sometimes dysphagia. In addition, as is widely known, dermatomyositis is associated with malignant tumors in some patients.1 Although diagnosis of dermatomyositis is based on a combination of clinical symptoms and various tests, muscle biopsy remains the standard in the diagnosis of dermatomyositis in spite of its invasiveness.2 This report describes a unique case of dermatomyositis with carcinoma of unknown primary disease in the head and neck (CUPHN) in which neck dissection was a preceding treatment for CUPHN. During the neck dissection, we performed a muscle biopsy of the cervical muscles and made a definitive diagnosis of dermatomyositis.

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