Analysis of the response to corticosteroid therapy in a personal series of 8 consecutive cases of dermatomyositis in childhood shows that there are advantages in a moderate dosage, short-term treatment schedule, with gradual tapering of the dosage as soon as there is clinical improvement without waiting for full remission, and in trying to stop steroid therapy within six months rather than following the more prolonged regimen currently still in vogue. Clinical response is a more reliable guide to progress than serum enzyme levels. Review of published reports suggests that overtreatment with corticosteroids may be a factor in chronicity of the disease and failure of adequate long-term response.
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