There have been few reports of congenital inflammatory myopathy in the literature, and most of these have been associated with congenital muscular dystrophy. We review the literature and present a case with electromyographic and muscle biopsy evidence of congenital inflammatory myopathy with onset in the perinatal period and no evidence of a congenital muscular dystrophy. There was evidence of subjective improvement following corticosteroid administration (approximately 1 mg/kg per day) with a concomitant normalization of the serum creatine kinase activity. Of particular interest in the case was the history of maternal infection, suggesting a possible postinfectious molecular mimicry as the etiology of the muscle inflammation. This case suggests that a rare form of congenital inflammatory myopathy does exist that is not associated with a congenital muscular dystrophy. A preliminary classification scheme is proposed to separate true congenital cases from those acquired after birth and those cases associated with congenital dystrophy.