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CASE REPORT
Hypercalcaemia, renal dysfunction, anaemia and bone lesions (CRAB) do not always represent multiple myeloma: diffuse large B cell lymphoma presenting with CRAB symptoms in a 69-year-old man
  1. Hafez Mohammad Ammar Abdullah1,
  2. Moataz Ellithi1,
  3. Qazi Waqas1,
  4. Arwyn Cunningham2 and
  5. Tony Oliver1
  1. 1 Internal Medicine, University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA
  2. 2 Pathology, University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Hafez Mohammad Ammar Abdullah, ammar.abdullah{at}usd.edu

Abstract

Hypercalcaemia, renal dysfunction, anaemia and bone lesions (CRAB) are a constellation of signs and symptoms that are collectively referred to as the CRAB features. When present together, multiple myeloma (MM) should be at the top of the differential diagnosis. We present a 69-year-old man who presented with severe body aches and bone pain in his ribs and pelvis, associated with fatigue and constipation. He was found to have hypercalcaemia, acute kidney injury, anaemia and numerous lytic lesion on chest imaging. Physical examination and imaging were unremarkable for any enlarged lymph nodes. The patient was initially suspected to have multiple myeloma, however, serum and urine protein electrophoresis, and serum free light chain assays were negative. The patient was ultimately diagnosed with diffuse large B cell lymphoma based on a bone marrow biopsy. This case highlights the fact that presence of hypercalcaemia, renal dysfunction, anaemia and bone lesions are not usually specific for MM.

  • oncology
  • cancer intervention
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Footnotes

  • Contributors HMAA, ME and QW were responsible for writing the summary and discussion. TO and AC were responsible for writing introduction and case presentation. AC also provided an expert read on the histology images. All of the authors were responsible for planning, conduct, reporting, conception and design, acquisition of data or analysis and interpretation of data.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

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