OBJECTIVES: To compare clinical characteristics, imaging findings and treatment requirements of patients with immune checkpoint inhibitor-mediated polymyalgia rheumatica (ICI-PMR) and primary PMR.

METHODS: This single centre, retrospective cohort study compared ICI-PMR in patients with cancer (n = 15) to patients with primary PMR (n = 37). A comparison was made between clinical symptoms, laboratory markers, ultrasonography,18F-FDG-PET/CT findings and treatment requirements related to PMR.

RESULTS: Patients with ICI-PMR less frequently fulfilled the EULAR/ACR classification criteria for PMR (66.7%) than patients with primary PMR (97.3%). Morning stiffness, weight loss and elevation of the ESR were less frequently seen in patients with ICI-PMR. No differences were observed regarding the presence of inflammatory lesions on ultrasound of the shoulders and hips between the two groups. The Leuven and the Leuven/Groningen 18F-FDG-PET/CT scores were significantly lower in the ICI-PMR group. Finally, the ICI-PMR group could be managed with less glucocorticoids than the primary PMR group.

CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate that ICI-PMR may have a milder course with less inflammation than primary PMR on 18F-FDG-PET/CT. ICI-mediated PMR patients can be managed with a relatively low glucocorticoid dose. Our study underscores that ICI-PMR should be regarded as PMR-like syndrome.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberkeae099
Number of pages9
JournalRheumatology (Oxford, England)
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9-Feb-2024


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